Reward prospect interacts with trial-by-trial preparation for potential distraction

Francesco Marini, Berry van den Berg, Marty G. Woldorff*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    14 Citations (Scopus)
    114 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    When attending for impending visual stimuli, cognitive systems prepare to identify relevant information while ignoring irrelevant, potentially distracting input. Recent work showed that a supramodal distracter-filtering mechanism is invoked in blocked designs involving expectation of possible distracter stimuli, although this entails a cost (distraction-filtering cost) on speeded performance when distracters are expected but not presented. Here we used an arrow-flanker task to study whether an analogous cost, potentially reflecting the recruitment of a specific distraction-filtering mechanism, occurs dynamically when potential distraction is cued trial-to-trial (cued distracter-expectation cost). In order to promote the maximal utilization of cue information by participants, in some experimental conditions the cue also signalled the possibility of earning a monetary reward for fast and accurate performance. This design also allowed us to investigate the interplay between anticipation for distracters and anticipation of reward, which is known to engender attentional preparation. Only in reward contexts did participants show a cued distracter-expectation cost, which was larger with higher reward prospect and when anticipation for both distracters and reward were manipulated trial-to-trial. Thus, these results indicate that reward prospect interacts with the distracter expectation during trial-by-trial preparatory processes for potential distraction. These findings highlight how reward guides cue-driven attentional preparation.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)313-335
    Number of pages23
    JournalVisual Cognition
    Volume23
    Issue number1-2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 7-Feb-2015

    Keywords

    • Reward prospect
    • Flanker task
    • Cued distracter-expectation cost
    • Attentional preparation
    • Distraction-filtering cost
    • Cueing paradigm
    • VISUAL SELECTIVE ATTENTION
    • COGNITIVE CONTROL
    • CONFLICT
    • TASK
    • SUPPRESSION
    • MECHANISMS
    • ASSOCIATIONS
    • EXPECTATION
    • CORTEX

    Fingerprint

    Dive into the research topics of 'Reward prospect interacts with trial-by-trial preparation for potential distraction'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this