August 2012
Volume 12, Issue 9
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2012
Spatial eccentricity and temporal transition of split attentional foci
Author Affiliations
  • Kazuhiko Yokosawa
    The University of Tokyo
  • Fumi Makino
    The University of Tokyo\nNational Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology
  • Jun Kawahara
    National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology
Journal of Vision August 2012, Vol.12, 1337. doi:10.1167/12.9.1337
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      Kazuhiko Yokosawa, Fumi Makino, Jun Kawahara; Spatial eccentricity and temporal transition of split attentional foci. Journal of Vision 2012;12(9):1337. doi: 10.1167/12.9.1337.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Various investigations have demonstrated that attentional focus is unitary, not splitable, over contiguous regions of space. However, others find that observers can split attentional foci concurrently over noncontiguous regions concurrently (e.g., Awh & Pashler, 2000). Key differences among studies remain unclear. We manipulated the spatial eccentricity of targets and explored temporal transition of attentional foci using Awh and Pashler’s (2000) partial report procedure. We also tested whether individual differences in working memory capacity affect the style of deploying attentional foci. Literature shows that individuals with high working memory capacity were able to simultaneously allocate their attention to noncontiguous regions. This leads to the prediction that working memory capacity contributes to differences in the style of deployment of attentional focus/foci. In the present study, prior to the onset of a search display consisted of nontargets (letters) and two targets (digits), two cues appeared at noncontiguous locations either horizontally or vertically. These cues indicated target locations in 80% of the trials. Cues and targets were separated by an SOA (50ms or 750ms) to probe the development of an attentional split, if any, over time. Results demonstrated a split of attention: target identification accuracy was higher at noncontiguous locations relative to those at the intervening uncued locations. This is consistent with results of Awh and Pasher (2000), with the exception that no cueing effect was obtained with vertical cues for short SOAs (50ms). No effect of working memory capacity was found on the split of attention. These results suggest that attentional split develops over time and space regardless of individual differences in working memory capacity.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2012


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