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Perception. 2015 Mar;44(3):269-88. doi: 10.1068/p7683.

The Processing Speed of Scene Categorization at Multiple Levels of Description: The Superordinate Advantage Revisited.

Author information

1
Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies, Kyoto University, Yoshida-nihonmatsu-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-8501, Japan h.banno@kwansei.ac.jp.
2
Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies, Kyoto University, Yoshida-nihonmatsu-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-8501, Japan.

Abstract

Recent studies have sought to determine which levels of categories are processed first in visual scene categorization and have shown that the natural and man-made superordinate-level categories are understood faster than are basic-level categories. The current study examined the robustness of the superordinate-level advantage in a visual scene categorization task. A go/no-go categorization task was evaluated with response time distribution analysis using an ex-Gaussian template. A visual scene was categorized as either superordinate or basic level, and two basic-level categories forming a superordinate category were judged as either similar or dissimilar to each other. First, outdoor/ indoor groups and natural/man-made were used as superordinate categories to investigate whether the advantage could be generalized beyond the natural/man-made boundary. Second, a set of images forming a superordinate category was manipulated. We predicted that decreasing image set similarity within the superordinate-level category would work against the speed advantage. We found that basic-level categorization was faster than outdoor/indoor categorization when the outdoor category comprised dissimilar basic-level categories. Our results indicate that the superordinate-level advantage in visual scene categorization is labile across different categories and category structures.

KEYWORDS:

basic level; categorization; response time analysis; scene perception; superordinate level

PMID:
26562252
DOI:
10.1068/p7683
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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