Saturday, July 20, 2019

Theories of Visual and Auditory Attention Essay example -- Neurology

It is essential that humans focus on specific objects as they would not be able to perform one action at a time, and humans see their world in objects. Another purpose of attention is so that actions can be directed and controlled (Allport, 1987 cited in Naish 2010). It is important to research this in order to optimise health and safety and performance in occupational fields and make further discoveries in clinical neuropsychology. Some debates rage around how we attend to objects through our auditory and visual processes. Early selection theorists argue that all extraneous information is filtered out at an early stage and is ignored completely. The brain has limited capacity to deal with all the stimuli surrounding the object. From this Broadbent (1958 cited in Naish 2010) devised his influential Filter Theory, an early selection theory in auditory research. Treisman (1980 cited in Naish 2010) was an attenuation theorist and her Feature Integration Theory was also extremely i nfluential, arguing some extraneous material is attended to before filtering. This essay will explore both theories and their contribution to our understanding of perception. It will make comparisons between the theories and the two senses. It will conclude that the research has made major contributions, but none has provided sufficient evidence to fully address the issues. Whether superfluous information is attended to or not, might depend on volume. Whilst some auditory researchers were interested in the Cocktail Party effect (how we focus on one conversation over others at a noisy party), Broadbent’s main interest was research for the UK Military. A notable project for him was considering how fighter pilots could pick out relevant radio mess... ...tudies in neuroscience could make a contribution to the debate by revealing the serial and/or parallel processing of the brain in detecting brain pathways and oscillations (Schyns 2011). More natural studies could be considered using brain imaging during normal day to day lives to increase ecological validity, across modalities. Works Cited Driver, J. (2001) ‘A selective review of selective attention research from the past century’ British Journal of Psychology 92, pp53-78 Naish, P. (2010) ‘Attention’. In Kaye (Ed) Cognitive Psychology (2nd edition): The Open University: Padstow. Pp29-59 Schyns PG, Thut G, Gross J (2011) ‘Cracking the Code of Oscillatory Activity’. PLoS Biol 9(5): e1001064. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.1001064 Shinn-Cunningham, B. G. (2008) ‘Object-based auditory and visual attention, Trends in Cognitive Sciences, vol.12, no.5, pp.182–6.

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