Attending to objects: Endogenous cues can produce inhibition of return

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Inhibition of Return (IOR) is effective in a wide range of experimental settings but has proven elusive under conditions of volitional (endogenous) attentional control. This result may be due to a continuing attentional bias towards the cued location. Here we ask whether IOR can be unmasked under endogenous cueing conditions when a predictive cue prevents such a bias. In Experiment 1, a central arrow directed attention endogenously to one end of a rectangular object. Attention initially radiated to an unpredicted location in the object but IOR later impaired target detection at that location. In Experiment 2, attention was directed endogenously to a dynamic object. While target detection was facilitated at a subsequent (and predicted) location of the rotating object, detection-latencies at its original location were slowed. Together the results show that it is possible to produce IOR using endogenous cues.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada 2: Washington University, Washington, DC, USA

Publication date: May 1, 2007

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