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The Effects of Cognitive Load, Social Objects, Non-social Objects and Adhd-like Traits on Visual Attention

Martinez Cedillo, Astrid Priscilla (2021) The Effects of Cognitive Load, Social Objects, Non-social Objects and Adhd-like Traits on Visual Attention. PhD thesis, University of Essex.


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The current thesis examines the effects of cognitive load, social object, non-social object and ADHD-like traits on visual attention. This thesis reports (Experiment 1 and 2) a modified version of Lavie et al, (2004; 2005) and confirmed that increased memory load disrupted performance in the classic flanker task, but not in the singleton. Experiment 3 uses the same manipulation of WM load to probe attention during the viewing of complex scenes. Experiment 4 and 5 examine the effects of visuospatial WM on different presentations: sequential and simultaneous. These experiments compare the extent to which increasing WM load would change the pattern of viewing of the physically salient and socially salient objects while also investigating differences in ADHD traits. Experiment 6 examines the effects of instructions on the image-viewing task by restricting areas such as: social and non-social. Experiments 7 and 8 examine the effects of occluding the eyes in a conversation in traits of ADHD and ASD (low vs high). Experiments 9 examines the relationship between working memory components (maintenance and distractor processing) and ADHD traits within the general population. This thesis discusses their results based on visual prioritisations (social, high and low salience), cognitive load and the heterogeneity of ADHD and their comorbidities. Taken together these results provide interesting implications in eye movements behaviour, in the understanding of individual differences and in the underlying cognitive abilities.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
Depositing User: Astrid Martinez Cedillo
Date Deposited: 02 Nov 2021 10:10
Last Modified: 02 Nov 2021 10:10

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