05 - Attention

05 Attention - Today Attention Psychology 405 What is attention Why do we need attention Bottom-up vs top-down influences Earl

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1 Attention Psychology 405 • What is attention? • Why do we need attention? Bottom-up vs. top-down influences: Earl selection (Broadbent’s Filter theor Today – Early selection (Broadbent’s Filter theory) – Attenuated selection (Treisman’s leaky filter theory). – Late selection (Norman’s Pertinence theory) What Exactly is Attention? • “Everyone knows what attention is.” – William James, 1890 • “No one knows what attention is.” – Harold Pashler, 1998 William James (1890) Everyone knows what attention is….It is the taking possession by the mind, in clear and vivid form of one out of what seem several vivid form, of one out of what seem several simultaneously possible objects or trains of thought. Focalization, concentration of consciousness are of its essence. It implies withdrawal from some things in order to deal effectively with others. Everyday Experience with Attention • We are confronted with more information than we can pay attention to can pay attention to. •The re a limitations to how much we can pay attention to at once. Everyday Experience with Attention • We can perform some tasks with little attention. Some tasks • Some tasks require less attention with practice and knowledge.
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2 Attention is involved in: •Pe rcep t ion – Auditory –V i su a l –E t c . • Action •M em o r y • Language • Problem solving Two General Definitions of Attention • Attention as a mental process : The mental process of concentrating effort on (external) stimuli or (internal) mental events mental events. • Attention as a limited mental resource : The limited mental energy or resource that powers the mental system. Processing capacity rmation Sensory Info Further processing bottleneck Capacity limits • Sensory limits: – Size of visual field 170 ° – Size of rod-free fovea (area of high-accuity vision) 2 ° (approx. the size of your thumb joint at arm’s length) • Limits in processing capacity – Contents in “sensory stores” decay rapidly – Not everything in a sensory store can be processed at once Top Down Influences in Eye movement Free viewing Eye- movement Estimate economic class Judge ages Guess past action Remember clothing movement pattern is task- dependent Types of Attention we’ll discuss • Selective – Focusing on one thing • Filter approach • Task dependent approach – Divided attention • Focusing on two things at a time • When is this possible and when is it not? – Visual: • What is seen
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3 Attention Selective attention • Loosely defined: The ability to focus on only one thing. • For example: being so immersed in a TV show that you do not hear the TV show that you do not hear the phone ring. The participants must repeat out loud (shadow) a spoken message heard in one ear while a second different message is playing in the other hear.
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This note was uploaded on 02/21/2012 for the course PYSC 405 taught by Professor Ferreira during the Fall '11 term at South Carolina.

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05 Attention - Today Attention Psychology 405 What is attention Why do we need attention Bottom-up vs top-down influences Earl

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