Exploring the effectiveness of auditory, visual, and audio-visual sensory cues in a multiple object tracking environment

Foecker, Julia, Polly, Atkins, Vantzos, Foivos-Christos , Wilhelm, Maximilian, Schenk, Thomas and Meyerhoff, Hauke S. (2022) Exploring the effectiveness of auditory, visual, and audio-visual sensory cues in a multiple object tracking environment. Attention Perception Psychophysics . ISSN 1943-3921

Full content URL: https://doi.org/10.3758/s13414-022-02492-5

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Exploring the effectiveness of auditory, visual, and audio-visual sensory cues in a multiple object tracking environment
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Abstract

Maintaining object correspondence among multiple moving objects is an essential task of the perceptual system in many everyday life activities. A substantial body of research has confirmed that observers are able to track multiple target objects amongst identical distractors based only on their spatiotemporal information. However, naturalistic tasks typically involve the integration of information from more than one modality, and there is limited research investigating whether auditory and audio-visual cues improve tracking. In two experiments, we asked participants to track either five target objects or three versus five target objects amongst similarly indistinguishable distractor objects for 14 s. During the tracking interval, the target objects bounced occasionally against the boundary of a centralised orange circle. A visual cue, an auditory cue, neither or both coincided with these collisions. Following the motion interval, the participants were asked to indicate all target objects. Across both experiments and both set sizes, our results indicated that visual and auditory cues increased tracking accuracy although visual cues were more effective than auditory cues. Audio-visual cues, however, did not increase tracking performance beyond the level of purely visual cues for both high and low load conditions. We discuss the theoretical implications of our findings for multiple object tracking as well as for the principles of multisensory integration.

Keywords:Multisensory processing, Attention: object-based, Visual perception
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C850 Cognitive Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:49280
Deposited On:27 May 2022 10:40

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