Responding to the direction of the eyes: In search of the masked gaze-cueing effect

Shahd Al-Janabi, Matthew Finkbeiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Recent studies have demonstrated that masked gaze cues can produce a cueing effect. Those studies, however, all utilized a localization task and, hence, are ambiguous with respect to whether the previously observed masked gaze-cueing effect reflects the orienting of attention or the preparation of a motor response. The aim of the present study was to investigate this issue by determining whether masked gaze cues can modulate responses in detection and discrimination tasks, both of which isolate spatial attention from response priming. First, we found a gaze-cueing effect for unmasked cues in detection, discrimination, and localization tasks, which suggests that the gaze-cueing effect for visible cues is not task dependent. Second, and in contrast, we found a gaze-cueing effect for masked cues in a localization task, but not in detection or discrimination tasks, which suggests that the gaze-cueing effect for masked cues is task dependent. Therefore, the present study shows that the masked gaze-cueing effect is attributed to response priming, as opposed to the orienting of spatial attention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-161
Number of pages14
JournalAttention, Perception, and Psychophysics
Volume76
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes

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