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Chisato Mine, Jun Saiki; Feature visibility is necessary in reward-based attentional capture. Journal of Vision 2018;18(10):1247. doi: 10.1167/18.10.1247.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
It is well established that reward biases the orienting of visual selective attention. Many studies repeatedly have shown that previously reward-signaling features involuntary capture attention even when feature-reward contingency was removed. However, little is known about the necessary components for the reward-based attentional capture. In the present study, we investigated whether reward-based capture develops even when reward-signaling features are rendered invisible via continuous flash suppression (CFS). To this end, we conducted the letter discrimination task during reward learning where the task-irrelevant colored circle signaled the magnitude of reward (i.e., high- or low-reward). During reward learning in Experiment 1, while rapidly changing Mondrian patterns stimulated the dominant eye, a reward-signaling color was presented to the nondominant eye. Moreover, in Experiment 2, stimuli were identical to Experiment 1, but reward-signaling features were provided without suppression, in which both Mondrian patterns and reward-signaling color were presented to a randomly chosen eye. After reward learning, participants completed an additional singleton task as a test phase, in which previously reward-signaling color was presented as one of the distractors, to evaluate the effect of reward-based capture. Results showed that when features were rendered invisible under CFS (Experiment 1), we could not observe the reaction times (RTs) delay in the high-reward condition, relative to the low-reward condition. However, RTs in the high-reward condition was significantly slower than that of low-reward condition when we presented features without suppression (Experiment 2). Moreover, regardless of the CFS manipulation, participants who could correctly report the reward-signaling color at a high accuracy showed attentional capture by the high-reward distractor. However, we could not obtain this reward-based capture for participants who could not discriminate reward-signaling features well. These findings suggest that visual discriminability of features associated with reward is necessary to develop reward-based attentional capture.
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2018
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