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, 33 (4), 788-97

Cross-trial Priming of Element Positions in Visual Pop-Out Search Is Dependent on Stimulus Arrangement

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Cross-trial Priming of Element Positions in Visual Pop-Out Search Is Dependent on Stimulus Arrangement

Thomas Geyer et al. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform.

Abstract

Two experiments examined cross-trial positional priming (V. Maljkovic & K. Nakayama, 1994, 1996, 2000) in visual pop-out search. Experiment 1 used regularly arranged target and distractor displays, as in previous studies. Reaction times were expedited when the target appeared at a previous target location (facilitation relative to neutral baseline) and slowed when the target appeared at a previous distractor location (inhibition). In contrast to facilitation, inhibition emerged only after extended practice. Experiment 2 revealed reduced facilitatory and no inhibitory priming when the elements' spatial arrangement was made irregular, indicating that positional--in particular, inhibitory--priming critically depends on the configuration of the display elements across sequences of trials. These results are discussed with respect to the role of the context for cross-trial priming in visual pop-out search.

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