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Attention and saccadic eye movements.


Four threshold detection experiments addressed three issues concerning the relationship between movements of spatial attention and saccadic eye movements: (a) the time course of attention shifts wit saccades, (b) the response of the two systems to changes in stimulus parameters, and (c) the relationship of attention to saccadic suppression. These issues bear on the more general question of the degree of independence between the saccadic and attentional movement systems. The results of these experiments support the contention that the mechanisms that shift attention are separate from those that control saccadic eye movements. Relevant events in the visual field periphery, however, will trigger both a saccade and attention shift. The attentional response to such events does not appear to be under subjects' control. The implication of these results for theories of saccadic suppression is discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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