Eye Tracking in Visual Search Experiments

  • Andrew HollingworthEmail author
  • Brett Bahle
Part of the Neuromethods book series (NM, volume 151)


Over the last 30 years, eye tracking has grown in popularity as a method to understand attention during visual search, principally because it provides a means to characterize the spatiotemporal properties of selective operations across a trial. In the present chapter, we review the motivations, methods, and measures for using eye tracking in visual search experiments. This includes a discussion of the advantages (and some disadvantages) of eye tracking data as a measure spatial attention, compared with more traditional reaction time paradigms. In addition, we discuss stimulus and design considerations for implementing experiments of this type. Finally, we will discuss the major measures that can be extracted from an eye tracking record and discuss the inferences that each allow. In the course of this discussion, we address both experiments using abstract arrays and experiments using real-world scene stimuli.


Eye movements Eye tracking Visual search Attention Scene perception 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychological and Brain SciencesThe University of IowaIowa CityUSA

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