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ERIC Number: EJ993036
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jun
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 81
ISSN: ISSN-0096-1523
Tagging Multiple Emotional Stimuli: Negative Valence Has Little Benefit
Watson, Derrick G.; Blagrove, Elisabeth
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, v38 n3 p785-803 Jun 2012
Six experiments examined the influence of emotional valence on the tagging and enumeration of multiple targets. Experiments 1, 5 and 6 found that there was no difference in the efficiency of tagging/enumerating multiple negative or positive stimuli. Experiment 2 showed that, when neutral-expression face distractors were present, enumerating negative targets was faster overall, but was only more efficient for small numbers of targets. Experiments 3 and 4 determined that this negative target advantage was most likely caused by increased attentional guidance to negatively-valenced stimuli and was not based on simple visual feature differences. The findings suggest that a multiple-target negative stimulus advantage will only occur under conditions of attentional competition, and for relatively small numbers of targets. The results are discussed in relation to theories of multiple- and single-item processing, threat-priority mechanisms, and the types of representations that support different attentional tasks. (Contains 9 figures, 1 table and 3 footnotes.)
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom