Psychological Research

, Volume 58, Issue 2, pp 83–91 | Cite as

The association of assimilation and an increase in visibility in perceptual grouping

  • Donald L. King
  • Walton Phillips
  • Jacqueline F. Mose
Original Article


Subjects performed a series of forced-choice discriminations to determine whether both group-assimilation and group-visibility associations could be obtained from nearly identical strong and weak group patterns. The discrimination between the context+target □ and the context ␣ was better than between the target and background, as was the case for, whose context and target components were its left and right halves, but not for. □ and produced a better performance when their lines (halves) were the same in color, and a poorer performance when their lines were different in color, but ⌈ produced the reverse. Likewise, only □ and produced a better performance when closed, and a poorer performance when open. These context+target etc., same-different, and closure results argue that □ and produced a greater increase in visibility of their component, more assimilation among their parts, and a stronger group than did ⌈. This evidence of a group-assimilation-visibility association cannot be attributed to the fortuitous occurrence of an increase in visibility with one object, assimilation with a second, and closure with a third, unlike previous evidence. This association cannot be explained by feature-based theories. Therefore, a superordinate unit is the cause of this association.


Poor Performance Great Increase Previous Evidence Perceptual Grouping Closure Result 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald L. King
    • 1
  • Walton Phillips
    • 2
  • Jacqueline F. Mose
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyHoward UniversityWashingtonU.S.A.
  2. 2.St MichaelsBarbados
  3. 3.Howard UniversityWashingtonUSA

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