Spontaneous neural fluctuations predict decisions to attend

Jesse J. Bengson, Todd A. Kelley, Xiaoke Zhang, Jane Ling Wang, George R Mangun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Ongoing variability in neural signaling is an intrinsic property of the brain. Often this variability is considered to be noise and ignored. However, an alternative view is that this variability is fundamental to perception and cognition and may be particularly important in decision-making. Here, we show that a momentary measure of occipital alpha-band power (8–13 Hz) predicts choices about where human participants will focus spatial attention on a trial-by-trial basis. This finding provides evidence for a mechanistic account of decision-making by demonstrating that ongoing neural activity biases voluntary decisions about where to attend within a given moment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2578-2584
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Volume26
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

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