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Leftward biases in picture scanning and line bisection: A gaze-contingent window study

Foulsham, Tom and Gray, Alexander and Nasiopoulos, Eleni and Kingstone, Alan (2013) 'Leftward biases in picture scanning and line bisection: A gaze-contingent window study.' Vision Research, 78. pp. 14-25. ISSN 0042-6989

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A bias for humans to attend to the left side of space has been reported in a variety of experiments. While patients with hemispatial neglect mistakenly bisect horizontal lines to the right of centre, neurologically healthy individuals show a mean leftward error. Here, two experiments demonstrated a robust tendency for participants to saccade to the left when viewing photographs. We were able to manipulate this bias by using an asymmetrical gaze-contingent window, which revealed more of the scene on one side of fixation?causing participants to saccade more often in that direction. A second experiment demonstrated the same change in eye movements occurring rapidly from trial to trial, and investigated whether it would carry over and effect attention during a line bisection task. There was some carry-over from gaze-contingent scene viewing to the eye movements during line bisection. However, despite frequent initial eye movements and many errors to the left, manual responses were not affected by this change in orienting. We conclude that the mechanisms underlying asymmetrical attention in picture scanning and line bisection are flexible and can be separated, with saccades in scene perception driven more by a skewed perceptual span.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Saccadic eye movements; scene perception; attention
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 14 May 2014 09:46
Last Modified: 14 Jan 2022 14:09

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