Quick Minds Slowed Down: Effects of Rotation and Stimulus Category on the Attentional Blink

Sander Martens*, Ozlem Korucuoglu, Henderikus G. O. M. Smid, Mark R. Nieuwenstein

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

18 Citaten (Scopus)
228 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Most people show a remarkable deficit to report the second of two targets when presented in close temporal succession, reflecting an attentional restriction known as the 'attentional blink' (AB). However, there are large individual differences in the magnitude of the effect, with some people showing no such attentional restrictions.

Methodology/Principal Findings: Here we present behavioral and electrophysiological evidence suggesting that these 'non-blinkers' can use alphanumeric category information to select targets at an early processing stage. When such information was unavailable and target selection could only be based on information that is processed relatively late (rotation), even non-blinkers show a substantial AB. Electrophysiologically, in non-blinkers this resulted in enhanced distractor-related prefrontal brain activity, as well as delayed target-related occipito-parietal activity (P3).

Conclusion/Significance: These findings shed new light on possible strategic mechanisms that may underlie individual differences in AB magnitude and provide intriguing clues as to how temporal restrictions as reflected in the AB can be overcome.

Originele taal-2English
Aantal pagina's14
TijdschriftPLoS ONE
Nummer van het tijdschrift10
StatusPublished - 21-okt-2010

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