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ERIC Number: EJ860077
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Oct
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 39
ISSN: ISSN-0096-1523
Do the Contents of Working Memory Capture Attention? Yes, but Cognitive Control Matters
Han, Suk Won; Kim, Min-Shik
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, v35 n5 p1292-1302 Oct 2009
There has been a controversy on whether working memory can guide attentional selection. Some researchers have reported that the contents of working memory guide attention automatically in visual search (D. Soto, D. Heinke, G. W. Humphreys, & M. J. Blanco, 2005). On the other hand, G.F. Woodman and S. J. Luck (2007) reported that they could not find any evidence of attentional capture by working memory. In the present study, we tried to find an integrative explanation for the different sets of results. We report evidence for attentional capture by working memory, but this effect was eliminated when search was perceptually demanding or the onset of the search was delayed long enough for cognitive control of search to be implemented under particular conditions. We suggest that perceptual difficulty and the time course of cognitive control as important factors that determine when information in working memory influences attention. (Contains 3 footnotes and 7 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A