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Large scale visual search - studies beyond the desktop computer screen Seminar

16:00 - 18:00
6 November 2014
University of Southampton Highfield Campus Shackleton Building (Building 44) Level 1, Room 1087

For more information regarding this seminar, please email Coral Abraham or Allyson Marchi at; .

Event details

Visiting Speaker - Autumn Psychology Seminar Series

Experimental psychology has become very attached to the desktop computer as the apparatus to study cognition. This has the potential to restrict the questions we ask, the functions we study and the ecological validity of our experiments.

Visual search, the processes of finding a target amongst distractors, has been the topic of intense research activity using desk-top computers with small screens. However, this task is part of a wider family of behaviours in which human and animals explore space to find items of interest or value. This wider class of behaviours in which the searcher moves within the search space may draw on similar cognitive and perceptual process as laboratory studies of visual search (e.g. memory, inhibition, executive control) but may also rely on different processes (e.g. foraging and navigation).

I will discuss a series of studies we have carried out to investigate large scale search. These studies extend our understanding of the search process and (I hope) will encourage others to broaden the range of experimental tools they deploy.

Speaker information

Professor Iain Gilchrist, University of Bristol. My research is focused on how humans gather information about their visual environment. Vision provides information so that we can interact with the world but that information is often not immediately available. As a result we have to sample the world to find the goal relevant information. This sampling involves a range of motor systems including eye, arm, head, and whole body movements and is a decision making process. One major focus of our work has been to understand how and why we move our eyes to sample the world, another is the mechanisms that support human foraging.

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