A well-replicated finding is that visual stimuli presented at an attended location are afforded a processing benefit in the form of speeded reaction times and increased accuracy (Mangun, 1995; Posner, 1979). This effect has been described using a spotlight metaphor, in which all stimuli within the focus of spatial attention receive facilitated processing, irrespective of other stimulus parameters. However, the spotlight metaphor has been brought into question by a series of combined expectancy studies that demonstrated that the behavioral benefits of spatial attention are contingent on secondary feature-based expectancies (Kingstone, 1992). The present work used an event-related potential (ERP) approach to reveal that the early neural signature of the spotlight of spatial attention is not sensitive to the validity of secondary feature-based expectancies.
- Normal volunteers
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physiology (medical)
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
- Developmental and Educational Psychology