August 2023
Volume 23, Issue 9
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2023
Influence of reward on saccadic vigor and pre-saccadic attention
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Oliver L. Steiner
    Department of Psychology, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany
  • Lukasz Grzeczkowski
    Department of Psychology, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany
  • Madeleine Gross
    Psychological and Brain Science Department, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA, USA
  • Martin Rolfs
    Department of Psychology, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany
  • Footnotes
    Acknowledgements  This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 865715) and the Heisenberg Programme of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (grants RO 3579/8-1 and RO 3579/12-1) granted to MR.
Journal of Vision August 2023, Vol.23, 5125. doi:
  • Views
  • Share
  • Tools
    • Alerts
      This feature is available to authenticated users only.
      Sign In or Create an Account ×
    • Get Citation

      Oliver L. Steiner, Lukasz Grzeczkowski, Madeleine Gross, Martin Rolfs; Influence of reward on saccadic vigor and pre-saccadic attention. Journal of Vision 2023;23(9):5125.

      Download citation file:

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

  • Supplements

Reward associated with a saccade-target location increases movement vigor — how soon and how fast the eyes move to their target. Because each eye-movement is preceded by a shift of attention to the saccadic target prior to saccade onset, we hypothesized that increased movement vigor may require a corresponding change in pre-saccadic attention, that is, an earlier and more pronounced increase in visual sensitivity at the target before saccade onset. To investigate this, we manipulated reward for movement speed in a dual-task paradigm designed to assess the time course of pre-saccadic attention. While observers fixated a black fixation point, a change in its color indicated the maximum reward possible in a trial (0, 1, or 10 cents). After a 200-ms delay, a saccade cue indicated to which of three stimulus locations observers had to make a saccade. To assess pre-saccadic attention, we embedded an oriented Gabor patch (50ms-200ms before saccade onset) in a stream of dynamic noise and, upon saccade landing, observers reported its orientation. After each trial, observers received feedback of reward payoffs as a function of movement speed (independent of perceptual performance). Movement vigor (total movement time relative to amplitude) was enhanced in high- as compared to low and no-reward conditions. Saccade direction mediated this effect, as reward affected vertical saccades more strongly than horizontal saccades. Moreover, individual differences in movement vigor predicted the magnitude of pre-saccadic sensitivity, an association that was particularly pronounced in the high-reward condition. These results point to an influence of reward on the visual system beyond motor control: To deal with changes of vigor in response to reward the active visual system may regulate visual sensitivity at the saccadic target as a function of the predicted outcome, just milliseconds before saccade onset.


This PDF is available to Subscribers Only

Sign in or purchase a subscription to access this content. ×

You must be signed into an individual account to use this feature.