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    Objects that direct visuospatial attention produce the search advantage for facing dyads

    Vestner, Tim and Over, H. and Gray, K. and Cook, Richard (2022) Objects that direct visuospatial attention produce the search advantage for facing dyads. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General 151 (1), pp. 161-171. ISSN 0096-3445.

    Vestner et al (in press), JEPG.pdf - Author's Accepted Manuscript

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    When hidden amongst pairs of individuals facing in the same direction, pairs of individuals arranged front-to-front are found faster in visual search tasks than pairs of individuals arranged back-to-back. Two rival explanations have been advanced to explain this search advantage for facing dyads. According to one account, the search advantage reflects the fact that front-to-front targets engage domain-specific social interaction processing that helps stimuli compete more effectively for limited attentional resources. Another view is that the effect is a by-product of the ability of individual heads and bodies to direct observers’ visuospatial attention. Here, we describe a two-part investigation that sought to test these accounts. First, we found that it is possible to replicate the search advantage with non-social objects. Next, we employed a cueing paradigm to investigate whether it is the ability of individual items to direct observers’ visuospatial attention that determines if an object category produces the search advantage for facing dyads. We found that the strength of the cueing effect produced by an object category correlated closely with the strength of the search advantage produced by that object category. Taken together, these results provide strong support for the directional cueing account.


    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: ©American Psychological Association 2021. This paper is not the copy of record and may not exactly replicate the authoritative document published in the APA journal. Please do not copy or cite without author's permission. The final article is available, upon publication, at the DOI cited above.
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Social perception, Social interactions, Search advantage for facing dyads, Visual search, Attentional cueing, Domain-general processing
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Richard Cook
    Date Deposited: 09 Jun 2021 08:47
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 18:10


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