2006 Student Research Conference:
19th Annual Student Research Conference

Social Science

How Target Identification Difficulty Affects the Pattern of the Attentional Blink
Cynthia L. Wooldridge*, Mallory C. Stites, and Emily R. Holekamp
Dr. Robert Tigner, Faculty Mentor

The present study is one of a series of experiments studying the Attentional Blink (AB) phenomenon. The AB refers to a deficit in identifying the second of two targets when presented among distracters at a very rapid rate (usually ten items per second). Prior studies have used a single identification task as the first target with a simple detection task as the second target. In our studies we found that individuals showed surprising accuracy in this sort of experiment. The current study examines how increased difficulty of each target affects the AB. The first target was one or two white letters, while the second target was the identification of a black or white digit among black distracter letters. As predicted, as difficulty increased, the AB also increased. Also, a strange pattern developed on tasks that required black digit identification. Implications of these results for current AB theories will be discussed.

Keywords: Attention, Attentional Blink, short-term memory, perception

Topic(s):Psychology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 55-2
Location: VH 1010
Time: 3:00

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