Sensory Systems | Cognitive Neuroscience
Task-irrelevant happy faces facilitate visual search performance
Yoshiyuki Ueda*, Sakiko Yoshikawa
*Corresponding author: Yoshiyuki Ueda
Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto Universtiy, Kyoto, Japan
F1000Posters 2012, 3: 803 (poster) [English]
Poster [11.26 MB]
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting 2012, 11 - 16 May 2012, 16.411
The best way to perform a task efficiently should be to focus on task-relevant information and ignore irrelevant information as much as possible. However, is this an ironclad rule? We investigated how images of task-irrelevant facial expressions modulate the cognitive process.
Reaction times were significantly shorter when happy faces were presented 400 ms prior to the search display than when any other facial expressions were presented. Reaction times did not decrease when inverted happy faces or attractive food photos were presented instead of upright happy faces. Eye movement data during search suggest that the facilitation of reaction time was not due to the capture of eye movement or increased response speed, but changes in search efficiency.
No relevant competing interests disclosed.
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