Expecting the initial glimpse: prior target knowledge activation or repeated search does not eliminate scene preview search benefits

Damien Litchfield, T. Donovan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

A brief glimpse of a scene can guide subsequent eye movement behaviour but it is still unclear how prior activation of target knowledge influences early scene processing and later eye movements. Using the gaze-contingent ‘flash-preview moving window’ (FPMW) paradigm to restrict access of peripheral vision during visual search, we manipulated whether identity of search targets was presented before or after scene previews. As expected, windowed search for a target was more efficient following a 250ms scene preview, whereas knowing the target identity prior to scene preview led to further improvements in how search was initiated and executed. However, in Experiment 2 when the target was not present during scene previews, only metrics reflecting the initiation of search continued to be modulated by prior activation of target knowledge. Experiment 3 provided new evidence to suggest that the search benefits from scene previews are maintained even when participants are repeatedly searching through the same type of scene for the same type of target. Experiment 4 replicated Experiment 3 whilst also controlling for differences in integration times. We discuss the robust findings of scene preview search benefits and the flexibility of the FPMW paradigm to measure how the first glimpse affects search.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-63
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Cognitive Psychology
Volume31
Issue number1
Early online date9 Dec 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2019

Keywords

  • flash-preview moving window
  • eye movements
  • scene perception
  • expectation
  • visual search

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