September 2015
Volume 15, Issue 12
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   September 2015
Beyond the blink: Understanding order perception in RSVP
Author Affiliations
  • Ellis Gootjes-Dreesbach
    School of Computing, University of Kent
  • Howard Bowman
    School of Computing, University of Kent
Journal of Vision September 2015, Vol.15, 1230. doi:
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      Ellis Gootjes-Dreesbach, Howard Bowman; Beyond the blink: Understanding order perception in RSVP. Journal of Vision 2015;15(12):1230. doi:

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

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The presented research shows a previously unreported finding in the attentional blink (AB) paradigm, which has been instrumental in exploring different questions on attention, cognitive control and consciousness. The AB is typically demonstrated in Rapid Serial Visual Presentation (RSVP) when identification of two targets is required: performance on reporting the second target declines when it appears between 100-500 ms after a fully processed first target. Several models of this phenomenon have been proposed and are measured against their ability to replicate the drop in second target report performance, Lag 1 sparing (high performance on recognizing both targets when presented in direct succession), and order errors at Lag 1, amongst others. We present evidence for another kind of order error in the AB paradigm: occurrence of half swaps (second target missed but first target reported in the wrong serial position) that are maximal at the end of the AB. The data come from a forced choice AB task where target identity and order of presentation of two letter targets between digit distractors were recorded. After demonstrating the effect, we conducted several follow up studies to characterise the conditions in which the swaps occur by varying target salience, position in the RSVP stream and stimulus-onset-asynchrony. We discuss how, similar to Lag 1 order errors, these half swaps might give new insight into the attentional mechanisms that give rise to the AB. This is especially important in the context of consciousness research employing this paradigm that has been increasing in popularity.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2015


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