Previous research has shown that changes to scenes are often surprisingly hard to detect. The research reported here investigated the relationship between individual differences in attention and change detection. We did this by assessing participantś breadth of attention in a functional field of view task (FFOV) and relating this measure to the speed with which individuals detected changes in scenes. We also examined how the salience, meaningfulness, and eccentricity of the scene changes affected perceptual change performance. In order to broaden the range of individual differences in attentional breadth, both young and old adults participated in the study. A strong negative relationship was obtained between attentional breadth and the latency with which perceptual changes were detected; observers with broader attentional windows detected changes faster. Salience and eccentricity had large effects on change detection, but meaning aided the performance of young adults only and only when changes also had low salience.
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This research was supported by a grant from the National Institute on Aging (AG14966) and a cooperative research agreement with the Army Research Laboratory (DAAL01-96-0003).
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Pringle, H.L., Irwin, D.E., Kramer, A.F. et al. The role of attentional breadth in perceptual change detection. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 8, 89–95 (2001). https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03196143
- Visual Search
- Change Detection
- Visual Search Task
- Attentional Breadth
- Perceptual Change