Attention, Context, and Responses: An eternal golden braid

When and Where

Wednesday, January 16, 2019 12:15 pm to 1:30 pm
Room 3130
Sidney Smith Hall
100 St. George Street


Jay Pratt, Psychology, University of Toronto


Video Recording of Talk

Abstract: Attention researchers have, not surprisingly, typically thought their experiments were examining attention. Moreover, they likely thought the attention they were studying was of either the exogenous (bottom-up) or endogenous (top-down) variety. However, other relevant factors may be at play in these experiments, such as the context in and around the experiments, and the manner in which responses were made during the experiments. This presentation will present three studies that will demonstrate: (1) the utility of considering context in the control of attention, (2) the consequences of ignoring responses when examining attention, (3) a highly interactive relationship between concepts and attention that blurs the lines between exogenous and endogenous. Taken together, these studies suggest that studying attention, in and of itself, may be more difficult than often thought.

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100 St. George Street