Development of selective attention: perceptual load influences early versus late attentional selection in children and adults.

Cynthia L. Huang-Pollock, Thomas H. Carr, Joel Nigg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

77 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The moderating effect of perceptual load on visual selective attention was examined in 2 studies. In Study 1, children and young adults searched displays of varying set size flanked by irrelevant distractors. Children's performance was as efficient as adults' under conditions of high but not low loads, suggesting that early selection engages rapidly maturing neural systems and late selection engages later-maturing systems. In Study 2, 4 age groups were tested, and place markers were set at empty locations to examine perceptual grouping effects. Study 1's pattem was replicated in all age groups, with onset of early selection occurring at lower loads for younger children. Overall, children initiated early selection at lower loads to compensate for immature anterior-system interference control processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)363-375
Number of pages13
JournalDevelopmental Psychology
Volume38
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

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Development of selective attention : perceptual load influences early versus late attentional selection in children and adults. / Huang-Pollock, Cynthia L.; Carr, Thomas H.; Nigg, Joel.

In: Developmental Psychology, Vol. 38, No. 3, 2002, p. 363-375.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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