alexa Eye movement assessment of selective attentional capture by emotional pictures.


Journal of Forensic Psychology

Author(s): Nummenmaa L, Hyn J, Calvo MG

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Abstract The eye-tracking method was used to assess attentional orienting to and engagement on emotional visual scenes. In Experiment 1, unpleasant, neutral, or pleasant target pictures were presented simultaneously with neutral control pictures in peripheral vision under instruction to compare pleasantness of the pictures. The probability of first fixating an emotional picture, and the frequency of subsequent fixations, were greater than those for neutral pictures. In Experiment 2, participants were instructed to avoid looking at the emotional pictures, but these were still more likely to be fixated first and gazed longer during the first-pass viewing than neutral pictures. Low-level visual features cannot explain the results. It is concluded that overt visual attention is captured by both unpleasant and pleasant emotional content. 2006 APA, all rights reserved This article was published in Emotion and referenced in Journal of Forensic Psychology

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