Attention rapidly reorganizes to naturally occurring structure in a novel activity sequence.

08:00 EDT 11th September 2018 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Attention rapidly reorganizes to naturally occurring structure in a novel activity sequence."

Fluent event processing involves selectively attending to information-rich regions within dynamically unfolding sensory streams (e.g., Newtson, 1973). What counts as information-rich likely depends on numerous factors, however, including overall event novelty and local opportunity for repeated viewing. Using Hard, Recchia, and Tversky's (2011) method, we investigated the extent to which these two variables affected viewers' attentional patterns as events unfolded. Specifically, we recorded viewers' "dwell times" as they advanced through two slideshows depicting distinct methods of shoelace tying varying in novelty but equated on other dimensions. Across two experiments, novelty sparked increased dwelling overall, and viewers' dwelling patterns displayed rapid and systematic reorganization to structure within the activity stream after just one viewing of distinctively novel content. As well, increased dwelling positively predicted memory performance. These findings newly illuminate reorganization in attention as relevant information within novel activity sequences is quickly incorporated to guide event processing and support event memory.


Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Cognition
ISSN: 1873-7838
Pages: 31-44


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