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Front Psychol. 2014 Aug 21;5:930. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00930. eCollection 2014.

Effects of monitoring for visual events on distinct components of attention.

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Neuro-Cognitive Psychology, Department of Psychology, Bielefeld University Bielefeld, Germany ; Center of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology, Bielefeld University Bielefeld, Germany.
Center for Visual Cognition, Department of Psychology, University of Copenhagen Copenhagen, Denmark.


Monitoring the environment for visual events while performing a concurrent task requires adjustment of visual processing priorities. By use of Bundesen's (1990) Theory of Visual Attention, we investigated how monitoring for an object-based brief event affected distinct components of visual attention in a concurrent task. The perceptual salience of the event was varied. Monitoring reduced the processing speed in the concurrent task, and the reduction was stronger when the event was less salient. The monitoring task neither affected the temporal threshold of conscious perception nor the storage capacity of visual short-term memory nor the efficiency of top-down controlled attentional selection.


TVA; event-based prospective memory; salience; sustained attention; vigilance; visual attention

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