BISC 121Lg Chapter Notes - Chapter 4: Richard Shiffrin, Anne Treisman, Binding Problem

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7 Feb 2017

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Chapter 4 Notes
Attention- ability to focus on specific stimuli and locations
Selective attention- paying attention to one thing while ignoring others
Distraction-a stimulus that interferes with the processing of another stimulus
Divided attention- paying attention to multiple things at once
Attentional capture- rapid attention shift due to a disruptive stimulus (loud noise, bright
light, etc.)
Visual scanning- moving eyes from one object/location to another
Filter model of attention- things that are not being paid attention to are filtered out early
in the process of perception (Donald Broadbent)
o Messages sensory memory filter detector memory
Sensory memory- holds incoming information for a moment
Filter- filters out unattended messages
Detector- processes attended message and determines higher-level
characteristics (meaning)
Sends to both short term and long term memory
Bottleneck model- filter restricts information flow
Wrong because the filter is selective based on the characteristics of
the information
Early selection model- filter gets rid of unattended message at the
o Dichotic listening- listening to different stimuli in the right and left ears
o Shadowing- repeating what you are hearing
o Experiment had you shadow the attended ear while trying to listen to the
unattended ear (Colin Cherry)
Found that the subject couldn’t report what was being said in the
unattended ear
Cocktail party effect- ability to focus on what one person is saying while other
conversations are occurring
Neville Moray did a dichotic listening experiment where the subject shadowed the
attended message and ignored the unattended message
o 1/3 of subjects detected their name when said in an unattended message
J.A. Gray and A.I. Wedderburn did a “Dear Aunt Jane” experiment where they shadowed
the attended message
o Attended message: Dear 7 Jane
o Unattended message: 9 Aunt 6
o Subjects reported hearing “Dear Aunt Jane”
o Subjects must have been taking the words’ meaning into account
Top-down processing
Treisman replaced the “filter” with an attenuator
o Attenuator- analyzes incoming messages’ physical characteristics, language, and
Attenuation model of attention- language and meaning can also be used to separate
o Analysis only proceeds as far as is necessary for identification of the attended
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