Saccadic target selection as a function of time

Wieske Van Zoest*, Mieke Donk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Citations (Scopus)


Recent evidence indicates that stimulus-driven and goal-directed control of visual selection operate independently and in different time windows (van Zoest et al., 2004). The present study further investigates how eye movements are affected by stimulus-driven and goal-directed control. Observers were presented with search displays consisting of one target, multiple non-targets and one distractor element. The task of observers was to make a fast eye movement to a target immediately following the offset of a central fixation point, an event that either co-occurred with or soon followed the presentation of the search display. Distractor saliency and target-distractor similarity were independently manipulated. The results demonstrated that the effect of distractor saliency was transient and only present for the fastest eye movements, whereas the effect of target-distractor similarity was sustained and present in all but the fastest eye movements. The results support an independent timing account of visual selection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-76
Number of pages16
JournalSpatial Vision
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 16 Jan 2006


  • Attention
  • Bottom-up and top-down
  • Eye movements
  • Goal-driven control
  • Saccadic visual selection
  • Stimulus-driven control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition


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