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Selection in spatial working memory is independent of perceptual selective attention, but they interact in a shared spatial priority map.

Hedge C, Oberauer K, Leonards U - Atten Percept Psychophys (2015)

Bottom Line: Experiments 2a and 2b corroborated the independence of selection observed in Experiment 1, but showed a benefit to reaction times when the placement of the arrow cue was aligned with the locations of relevant objects in WM.Experiment 2c showed that the same benefit also occurs when participants are not able to mark an updating location through eye fixations.Together, these data can be accounted for by a framework in which perceptual selection and selection in WM are separate mechanisms that interact through a shared spatial priority map.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Psychology, Cardiff University, Tower Build, Park Place, Cardiff, CF10 3AT, UK. hedgec@cardiff.ac.uk.

ABSTRACT
We examined the relationship between the attentional selection of perceptual information and of information in working memory (WM) through four experiments, using a spatial WM-updating task. Participants remembered the locations of two objects in a matrix and worked through a sequence of updating operations, each mentally shifting one dot to a new location according to an arrow cue. Repeatedly updating the same object in two successive steps is typically faster than switching to the other object; this object switch cost reflects the shifting of attention in WM. In Experiment 1, the arrows were presented in random peripheral locations, drawing perceptual attention away from the selected object in WM. This manipulation did not eliminate the object switch cost, indicating that the mechanisms of perceptual selection do not underlie selection in WM. Experiments 2a and 2b corroborated the independence of selection observed in Experiment 1, but showed a benefit to reaction times when the placement of the arrow cue was aligned with the locations of relevant objects in WM. Experiment 2c showed that the same benefit also occurs when participants are not able to mark an updating location through eye fixations. Together, these data can be accounted for by a framework in which perceptual selection and selection in WM are separate mechanisms that interact through a shared spatial priority map.

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Schematic of two variants of the spatial-updating task. In Variant 1 (left side), the arrow cues were presented outside the grid, such that perceptual attention is always drawn away from the location of the object to be updated. In the three-arrow version (illustrated in the first update), two of these arrows face in one direction, with the remaining arrow facing in the opposite direction. Participants were required to determine the dominant direction of the arrows in the cue and to use this direction for their WM update. The single-arrow version (shown in the lower left frame) consisted of a single arrow cue presented in a peripheral location. In Variant 2 of the task (right side), arrow cues were presented within the grid, and could overlap with either the old or the new (as shown in the second update) location of the object to be updated in WM, or could be presented in the location of the passive memory item (as in the first update), or could be in another location, not currently occupied by either object. In Experiment 2a, we used a smaller grid size (2 × 2) than we had previously used. Experiment 2b replicated the design using the 3 × 3 grid, and Experiment 2c replicated Experiment 2b while additionally controlling for participants’ use of eye movement strategies
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Fig2: Schematic of two variants of the spatial-updating task. In Variant 1 (left side), the arrow cues were presented outside the grid, such that perceptual attention is always drawn away from the location of the object to be updated. In the three-arrow version (illustrated in the first update), two of these arrows face in one direction, with the remaining arrow facing in the opposite direction. Participants were required to determine the dominant direction of the arrows in the cue and to use this direction for their WM update. The single-arrow version (shown in the lower left frame) consisted of a single arrow cue presented in a peripheral location. In Variant 2 of the task (right side), arrow cues were presented within the grid, and could overlap with either the old or the new (as shown in the second update) location of the object to be updated in WM, or could be presented in the location of the passive memory item (as in the first update), or could be in another location, not currently occupied by either object. In Experiment 2a, we used a smaller grid size (2 × 2) than we had previously used. Experiment 2b replicated the design using the 3 × 3 grid, and Experiment 2c replicated Experiment 2b while additionally controlling for participants’ use of eye movement strategies

Mentions: To derive predictions for the present study, we adopted a logic similar to that of Awh et al. (1998); that is, if perceptual attention underlies the prioritized state of the FoA in WM, we should observe a reduction or elimination of the repetition benefit when perceptual attention is drawn away from the memory item in the FoA. In contrast, we should observe faster RTs when perceptual attention and the FoA in WM are aligned. To incorporate this logic into our paradigm, we manipulated the location of the arrow cue indicating the update direction, and used the arrow location to control which location is selected by perceptual attention. We created two variants of the task illustrated in Fig. 1. In the first variant (Exp. 1), the arrow cue always appeared in one of four random locations in the periphery (i.e., outside the grid containing the to-be-updated objects). We used two kinds of arrow cues: single arrow heads and a group of three arrow heads. We assumed that the finer perceptual discrimination required by the three-arrow cue would mirror the requirement for spatial selective attention in discriminating an item from peripheral distractors in the Eriksen flanker task (Eriksen & Eriksen, 1974), thus ensuring that participants were required to shift their perceptual attention away from the location of the current FoA in WM. In the second variant of our paradigm (Exps. 2a, 2b, and 2c—see the Fig. 2 caption for details), the arrow cues were presented in different locations within the grid, allowing us to compare the RTs on updates in which the arrow cue was aligned with the object to be updated or was in a different location. The two variants of the paradigm are illustrated in Fig. 2.Fig. 2


Selection in spatial working memory is independent of perceptual selective attention, but they interact in a shared spatial priority map.

Hedge C, Oberauer K, Leonards U - Atten Percept Psychophys (2015)

Schematic of two variants of the spatial-updating task. In Variant 1 (left side), the arrow cues were presented outside the grid, such that perceptual attention is always drawn away from the location of the object to be updated. In the three-arrow version (illustrated in the first update), two of these arrows face in one direction, with the remaining arrow facing in the opposite direction. Participants were required to determine the dominant direction of the arrows in the cue and to use this direction for their WM update. The single-arrow version (shown in the lower left frame) consisted of a single arrow cue presented in a peripheral location. In Variant 2 of the task (right side), arrow cues were presented within the grid, and could overlap with either the old or the new (as shown in the second update) location of the object to be updated in WM, or could be presented in the location of the passive memory item (as in the first update), or could be in another location, not currently occupied by either object. In Experiment 2a, we used a smaller grid size (2 × 2) than we had previously used. Experiment 2b replicated the design using the 3 × 3 grid, and Experiment 2c replicated Experiment 2b while additionally controlling for participants’ use of eye movement strategies
© Copyright Policy - OpenAccess
Related In: Results  -  Collection

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getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4644201&req=5

Fig2: Schematic of two variants of the spatial-updating task. In Variant 1 (left side), the arrow cues were presented outside the grid, such that perceptual attention is always drawn away from the location of the object to be updated. In the three-arrow version (illustrated in the first update), two of these arrows face in one direction, with the remaining arrow facing in the opposite direction. Participants were required to determine the dominant direction of the arrows in the cue and to use this direction for their WM update. The single-arrow version (shown in the lower left frame) consisted of a single arrow cue presented in a peripheral location. In Variant 2 of the task (right side), arrow cues were presented within the grid, and could overlap with either the old or the new (as shown in the second update) location of the object to be updated in WM, or could be presented in the location of the passive memory item (as in the first update), or could be in another location, not currently occupied by either object. In Experiment 2a, we used a smaller grid size (2 × 2) than we had previously used. Experiment 2b replicated the design using the 3 × 3 grid, and Experiment 2c replicated Experiment 2b while additionally controlling for participants’ use of eye movement strategies
Mentions: To derive predictions for the present study, we adopted a logic similar to that of Awh et al. (1998); that is, if perceptual attention underlies the prioritized state of the FoA in WM, we should observe a reduction or elimination of the repetition benefit when perceptual attention is drawn away from the memory item in the FoA. In contrast, we should observe faster RTs when perceptual attention and the FoA in WM are aligned. To incorporate this logic into our paradigm, we manipulated the location of the arrow cue indicating the update direction, and used the arrow location to control which location is selected by perceptual attention. We created two variants of the task illustrated in Fig. 1. In the first variant (Exp. 1), the arrow cue always appeared in one of four random locations in the periphery (i.e., outside the grid containing the to-be-updated objects). We used two kinds of arrow cues: single arrow heads and a group of three arrow heads. We assumed that the finer perceptual discrimination required by the three-arrow cue would mirror the requirement for spatial selective attention in discriminating an item from peripheral distractors in the Eriksen flanker task (Eriksen & Eriksen, 1974), thus ensuring that participants were required to shift their perceptual attention away from the location of the current FoA in WM. In the second variant of our paradigm (Exps. 2a, 2b, and 2c—see the Fig. 2 caption for details), the arrow cues were presented in different locations within the grid, allowing us to compare the RTs on updates in which the arrow cue was aligned with the object to be updated or was in a different location. The two variants of the paradigm are illustrated in Fig. 2.Fig. 2

Bottom Line: Experiments 2a and 2b corroborated the independence of selection observed in Experiment 1, but showed a benefit to reaction times when the placement of the arrow cue was aligned with the locations of relevant objects in WM.Experiment 2c showed that the same benefit also occurs when participants are not able to mark an updating location through eye fixations.Together, these data can be accounted for by a framework in which perceptual selection and selection in WM are separate mechanisms that interact through a shared spatial priority map.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Psychology, Cardiff University, Tower Build, Park Place, Cardiff, CF10 3AT, UK. hedgec@cardiff.ac.uk.

ABSTRACT
We examined the relationship between the attentional selection of perceptual information and of information in working memory (WM) through four experiments, using a spatial WM-updating task. Participants remembered the locations of two objects in a matrix and worked through a sequence of updating operations, each mentally shifting one dot to a new location according to an arrow cue. Repeatedly updating the same object in two successive steps is typically faster than switching to the other object; this object switch cost reflects the shifting of attention in WM. In Experiment 1, the arrows were presented in random peripheral locations, drawing perceptual attention away from the selected object in WM. This manipulation did not eliminate the object switch cost, indicating that the mechanisms of perceptual selection do not underlie selection in WM. Experiments 2a and 2b corroborated the independence of selection observed in Experiment 1, but showed a benefit to reaction times when the placement of the arrow cue was aligned with the locations of relevant objects in WM. Experiment 2c showed that the same benefit also occurs when participants are not able to mark an updating location through eye fixations. Together, these data can be accounted for by a framework in which perceptual selection and selection in WM are separate mechanisms that interact through a shared spatial priority map.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus