Attention: the way in which we select what info we want to work with
Selective attention: infinite number of things we can focus on.
Early selection theories: Broadbent’s filter model: Dichotic listening. A pair of
headphones and different messages coming from each, you need to shadow (pay
attention) to one and not the other. You must only attend to one.You pick this
before you hear or extract the context
Cherry (1953) People follow attended message but miss much about the unattended
messages. It was backwards. (The unattended one) Although they missed that it was
backwards but there could tell if the voice was male or female.
Moray (1959) Unattended message was a list repeated 35 times and they still didn’t
understand the content.
- We work so hard to listen and understand the one we are paying attention to,
that we miss the unattended one
- Basically there is a filter that selects which information will be more fully
processed. Filtration occurs prior to extraction of meaning. The limit is on the
amount of info that can be processed simultaneously. (Broadbent thought
filter was to prevent information overload)
Problems with the filter theory: The cocktail party effect (moray 1959)
- Shadowing is disrupted when one’s own name is embedded in either the
attended or the unattended message. Important info can be processed pre
attentively. Could it just be that they notice their name when the attention
filter lapses? If they say the persons name in the “unattended ear” they will
- Attention leakage, hear a bit of info from both and combines the info. “in a
picnic basket, she had sandwiches and brownies” ex. There is little subjective
awareness of switch. Beyond consciousness decision to switch ears.
- Corteen and wood 1972: They paired shock with city names and then
presented those city names and new city names in the unattended ear in a
shadowing task. Therefore we pick up some info even before the semantic
- Treismans attention model:
1 stage: attenuator instead of filter: analyzes fir physical characteristics,
language and meaning. It i