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Interactions Between Exogenous Auditory and Visual Spatial Attention

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Six experiments were carried out to investigate the issue of cross-modality between exogenous auditory and visual spatial attention employing Posner's cueing paradigm in detection, localization, and discrimination tasks. Results indicated cueing in detection tasks with visual or auditory cues and visual targets but not with auditory targets (Experiment 1). In the localization tasks, cueing was found with both visual and auditory targets. Inhibition of return was apparent only in the within-modality conditions (Experiment 2). This suggests that it is important whether the attention system is activated directly (within a modality) or indirectly (between modalities). Increasing the cue validity from 50% to 80% influenced performance only in the localization task (Experiment 4). These findings are interpreted as being indicative for modality-specific but interacting attention mechanisms. The results of Experiments 5 and 6 (up/down discrimination tasks) also show cross-modal cueing but not with visual cues and auditory targets. Furthermore, there was no inhibition of return in any condition. This suggests that some cueing effects might be task dependent.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/713755882

Publication date: February 1, 2000

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