Content-specific working memory modulation of the attentional blink

Elkan G. Akyürek, Ali Abedian-Amiri, Sonja M. Ostermeier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Three experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of working memory content on temporal attention in a rapid serial visual presentation attentional blink paradigm. It was shown that categorical similarity between working memory content and the target stimuli pertaining to the attentional task (both digits) increased attentional blink magnitude compared to a condition in which this similarity was absent (colors and digits, respectively). This effect was only observed when the items in working memory were not presented as conjunctions of the involved categories (i.e., colored digits). This suggested that storage and retrieval from working memory was at least preferentially conjunctive in this case. It was furthermore shown that the content of working memory enhanced the identification rate of the second target, by means of repetition priming, when inter-target lag was short and the attentional blink was in effect. The results are incompatible with theories of temporal attention that assume working memory has no causal role in the attentional blink and support theories that do.

Original languageEnglish
Article number16696
Number of pages8
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume6
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2-Feb-2011

Keywords

  • SERIAL VISUAL PRESENTATION
  • TEMPORAL ATTENTION
  • CAPACITY
  • CONSOLIDATION
  • DIFFICULTY
  • MODEL
  • TIME
  • TASK

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