Eye tracking under dichoptic viewing conditions: a practical solution

Behav Res Methods. 2017 Aug;49(4):1303-1309. doi: 10.3758/s13428-016-0805-2.

Abstract

In several research contexts it is important to obtain eye-tracking measures while presenting visual stimuli independently to each of the two eyes (dichoptic stimulation). However, the hardware that allows dichoptic viewing, such as mirrors, often interferes with high-quality eye tracking, especially when using a video-based eye tracker. Here we detail an approach to combining mirror-based dichoptic stimulation with video-based eye tracking, centered on the fact that some mirrors, although they reflect visible light, are selectively transparent to the infrared wavelength range in which eye trackers record their signal. Although the method we propose is straightforward, affordable (on the order of US$1,000) and easy to implement, for many purposes it makes for an improvement over existing methods, which tend to require specialized equipment and often compromise on the quality of the visual stimulus and/or the eye tracking signal. The proposed method is compatible with standard display screens and eye trackers, and poses no additional limitations on the quality or nature of the stimulus presented or the data obtained. We include an evaluation of the quality of eye tracking data obtained using our method, and a practical guide to building a specific version of the setup used in our laboratories.

Keywords: Dichoptic viewing; Eye tracking; Gaze; Infrared; Mirror; Pupil; Stereoscope.

MeSH terms

  • Eye Movements / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Photic Stimulation / methods*