Multiple-target tracking: A role for working memory?

Q J Exp Psychol (Hove). 2006 Jun;59(6):1101-16. doi: 10.1080/02724980543000097.


In order to identify the cognitive processes associated with target tracking, a dual-task experiment was carried out in which participants undertook a dynamic multiple-object tracking task first alone and then again, concurrently with one of several secondary tasks, in order to investigate the cognitive processes involved. The research suggests that after designated targets within the visual field have attracted preattentive indexes that point to their locations in space, conscious processes, vulnerable to secondary visual and spatial task interference, form deliberate strategies beneficial to the tracking task, before tracking commences. Target tracking itself is realized by central executive processes, which are sensitive to any other cognitive demands. The findings are discussed in the context of integrating dynamic spatial cognition within a working memory framework.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cognition
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Memory*
  • Middle Aged
  • Space Perception
  • Visual Fields
  • Visual Perception