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Full Access Exogenous auditory cues decrease audiovisual integration of simple lights and sounds

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Exogenous auditory cues decrease audiovisual integration of simple lights and sounds

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Both bottom-up attention and multisensory integration are processes that can decrease detection times of simple lights and sounds (Spence, 2010; Stevenson et al., 2012). In previous studies, the interaction between top-down attention and audiovisual integration has been extensively investigated (for a review see Talsma et al., 2010). Yet, little attention has been given to the interaction between bottom-up attention and audiovisual integration. We examined the influence of exogenous auditory cues on the integration of lights and sounds in a simple detection task. We presented valid (cue same side as target), invalid (cue opposite side of target), or no cues at random SOAs (175–250 ms) before the presentation of an auditory, visual, or audiovisual target on the left or right side of the screen. As expected, auditory cues decreased response times (RTs) to auditory, visual, and audiovisual targets, compared to the no cue condition, regardless of their validity. RTs to audiovisual targets were faster compared to RTs to auditory targets only in the no cue condition. To investigate whether audiovisual integration was influenced by bottom-up attention, we compared the cumulative density functions (CDF) of audiovisual RTs and the race-model in each cue condition (Ulrich et al., 2007). We found significant violations of the race-model only in the no cue condition. These results indicate that bottom-up attention facilitates the processing of audiovisual information, but at the same time reduces audiovisual integration. We suggest that bottom-up and top-down forms of attention may influence audiovisual integration in different ways.

Affiliations: 1: 1Utrecht University, Department of Experimental Psychology, The Netherlands; 2: 2University Medical Center Utrecht and Rehabilitation Center De Hoogstraat, Rudolf Magnus Institute of Neuroscience and Center of Excellence for Rehabilitation Medicine, The Netherlands

Both bottom-up attention and multisensory integration are processes that can decrease detection times of simple lights and sounds (Spence, 2010; Stevenson et al., 2012). In previous studies, the interaction between top-down attention and audiovisual integration has been extensively investigated (for a review see Talsma et al., 2010). Yet, little attention has been given to the interaction between bottom-up attention and audiovisual integration. We examined the influence of exogenous auditory cues on the integration of lights and sounds in a simple detection task. We presented valid (cue same side as target), invalid (cue opposite side of target), or no cues at random SOAs (175–250 ms) before the presentation of an auditory, visual, or audiovisual target on the left or right side of the screen. As expected, auditory cues decreased response times (RTs) to auditory, visual, and audiovisual targets, compared to the no cue condition, regardless of their validity. RTs to audiovisual targets were faster compared to RTs to auditory targets only in the no cue condition. To investigate whether audiovisual integration was influenced by bottom-up attention, we compared the cumulative density functions (CDF) of audiovisual RTs and the race-model in each cue condition (Ulrich et al., 2007). We found significant violations of the race-model only in the no cue condition. These results indicate that bottom-up attention facilitates the processing of audiovisual information, but at the same time reduces audiovisual integration. We suggest that bottom-up and top-down forms of attention may influence audiovisual integration in different ways.

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/content/journals/10.1163/22134808-000s0169
2013-05-16
2017-01-19

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