Distinguishing non-spatial from spatial biases in visual selection: Neuropsychological evidence

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Recently, it has been shown that patients with visual extinction can show enhanced awareness of contralesional stimuli that match the contents of working memory [Soto, D., & Humphreys, G.W. (2006). Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. USA, 103, 4789-4792]. Here we investigate whether these effects extend to cases where the working memory cue is verbal rather than visual (Study 1), and we show that non-spatial cues can overcome problems in spatial disengagement in patients, and this can affect the first eye movement made in search (Study 2). We discuss the implications of the data for understanding the relations between the cueing of attention from visual and conceptual information held in working memory and the axing of spatial attention, and for understanding the relations between non-spatial and spatial biases in selection. (C) 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)226-234
Number of pages9
JournalActa Psychologica
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2011


  • Visual extinction, Verbal, Working memory, Attention, Visual