Centre for Cognitive Neuroscience and Cognitive Systems

CCNCS Seminar Details

Sacrificing "What" for "When", Trade-offs and Acuity Loss in Conscious Perception at Visual Overload

Speaker: Howard Bowman
Date/Time: Thursday 3 November 2011, 12.00pm
Location: Psychology Conference Room


Rapid Serial Visual Presentation (RSVP) has been used extensively to explore how human perception breaks down when the visual system is overloaded. When presented in RSVP, with around ten (and even up to twenty) visual stimuli a second, perception has to be highly selective in what it allows through to awareness, generating a suite of deficits including, the Attentional Blink, Repetition Blindness, Temporal Conjunction Errors and Order Errors. The Simultaneous Type, Serial Token (STST) model explains these phenomena in terms of a trade-off between accurate identification of stimuli (type information) and episodic segregation of encoding (token information). Specifically, it is proposed that identity and episodic integrity are differentially sacrificed dependent upon the time interval between salient stimuli. The talk will summarise a body of STST work, spanning the model's initial formulation [1,2] and its behavioural [2,3] & electrophysiological [4,5] verification.

[1] The simultaneous type, serial token model of temporal attention and working memory. H. Bowman and B. Wyble. Psychological Review, 114(1):38-70, January 2007.

[2] The attentional blink provides episodic distinctiveness: Sparing at a cost. B. Wyble, H. Bowman, and M. Nieuwenstein. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 35(3):787-807, April 2009.

[3] Attentional Episodes in Visual Perception. B. Wyble, M. Potter, H. Bowman & M. Nieuwenstein. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. 140 (3): 488-505, 2011.

[4] The attentional blink reveals serial working memory encoding: Evidence from virtual & human event-related potentials. Patrick Craston, Brad Wyble, Srivas Chennu, and Howard Bowman. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 21(3):550-566, March 2009.

[5] Attention Increases the Temporal Precision of Conscious Perception: Verifying the Neural-ST² Model. Srivas Chennu, Patrick Craston, Brad Wyble, and Howard Bowman. PLoS Computational Biology, 5(11):e1000576, November 2009.

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