Studying the integrated functional cognitive basis of sustained attention with a Primed Subjective-Illusory-Contour Attention Task

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Sustained attention plays an important role in everyday life, for work, learning, or when affected by attention disorders. Studies of the neural correlates of attention commonly treat sustained attention as an isolated construct, measured with computerized continuous performance tests. However, in any ecological context, sustained attention interacts with other executive functions and depends on lower level perceptual processing. Such interactions occur, for example, in inhibition of interference, and processing of complex hierarchical stimuli; both of which are important for successful ecological attention. Motivated by the need for more studies on neural correlates of higher cognition, I present an experiment to investigate these interactions of attention in 17 healthy participants measured with high-resolution electroencephalography. Participants perform a novel 2-alternative forced-choice computerised performance test, the Primed Subjective Illusory Contour Attention Task (PSICAT), which presents gestalt-stimuli targets with distractor primes to induce interference inhibition during complex-percept processing. Using behavioural and brain-imaging analyses, I demonstrate the novel result that task-irrelevant incongruency can evoke stronger behavioural and neural responses than the task-relevant stimulus condition; a potentially important finding in attention disorder research. PSICAT is available as an open-source code repository at the following url, allowing researchers to reuse and adapt it to their requirements.

Original languageEnglish
Article number13514
JournalScientific Reports
Volume8
Number of pages14
ISSN2045-2322
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sep 2018
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • COMPLETION
  • CORTICAL ACTIVITY
  • EEG
  • GESTALT PSYCHOLOGY
  • ILLUSIONS
  • INDEPENDENT COMPONENT ANALYSIS
  • ORGANIZATION
  • OSCILLATIONS
  • PERFORMANCE
  • VISUAL-PERCEPTION
  • 6162 Cognitive science
  • 515 Psychology

Cite this

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title = "Studying the integrated functional cognitive basis of sustained attention with a Primed Subjective-Illusory-Contour Attention Task",
abstract = "Sustained attention plays an important role in everyday life, for work, learning, or when affected by attention disorders. Studies of the neural correlates of attention commonly treat sustained attention as an isolated construct, measured with computerized continuous performance tests. However, in any ecological context, sustained attention interacts with other executive functions and depends on lower level perceptual processing. Such interactions occur, for example, in inhibition of interference, and processing of complex hierarchical stimuli; both of which are important for successful ecological attention. Motivated by the need for more studies on neural correlates of higher cognition, I present an experiment to investigate these interactions of attention in 17 healthy participants measured with high-resolution electroencephalography. Participants perform a novel 2-alternative forced-choice computerised performance test, the Primed Subjective Illusory Contour Attention Task (PSICAT), which presents gestalt-stimuli targets with distractor primes to induce interference inhibition during complex-percept processing. Using behavioural and brain-imaging analyses, I demonstrate the novel result that task-irrelevant incongruency can evoke stronger behavioural and neural responses than the task-relevant stimulus condition; a potentially important finding in attention disorder research. PSICAT is available as an open-source code repository at the following url, allowing researchers to reuse and adapt it to their requirements.",
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Studying the integrated functional cognitive basis of sustained attention with a Primed Subjective-Illusory-Contour Attention Task. / Cowley, Benjamin Ultan.

In: Scientific Reports, Vol. 8, 13514, 10.09.2018.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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