This study aimed to investigate the facilitatory versus inhibitory effects of dynamic non-predictive central cues presented in a realistic environment. Realistic human-avatars initiated eye contact and then dynamically looked to the left, right or centre of a table. A moving stick served as a non-social control cue and participants localised (Experiment 1) or discriminated (Experiment 2) a contextually relevant target (teapot/teacup). The cues movement took 500 ms and stimulus onset asynchronies (SOA, 150 ms/300 ms/500 ms/1000 ms) were measured from movement initiation. Similar cuing effects were seen for the social avatar and non-social stick cue across tasks. Results showed facilitatory processes without inhibition, though there was some variation by SOA and task. This is the first time facilitatory versus inhibitory processes have been directly investigated where eye contact is initiated prior to gaze shift. These dynamic stimuli allow a better understanding of how attention might be cued in more realistic environments.
|Number of pages||13|
|Early online date||10 Aug 2021|
|Publication status||E-pub ahead of print - 10 Aug 2021|
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Funding: This research was funded by a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship.