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In search of the focus of attention in working memory: 13 years of the retro-cue effect

Overview of attention for article published in Attention, Perception & Psychophysics, April 2016
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Title
In search of the focus of attention in working memory: 13 years of the retro-cue effect
Published in
Attention, Perception & Psychophysics, April 2016
DOI 10.3758/s13414-016-1108-5
Pubmed ID
Authors

Alessandra S. Souza, Klaus Oberauer

Abstract

The concept of attention has a prominent place in cognitive psychology. Attention can be directed not only to perceptual information, but also to information in working memory (WM). Evidence for an internal focus of attention has come from the retro-cue effect: Performance in tests of visual WM is improved when attention is guided to the test-relevant contents of WM ahead of testing them. The retro-cue paradigm has served as a test bed to empirically investigate the functions and limits of the focus of attention in WM. In this article, we review the growing body of (behavioral) studies on the retro-cue effect. We evaluate the degrees of experimental support for six hypotheses about what causes the retro-cue effect: (1) Attention protects representations from decay, (2) attention prioritizes the selected WM contents for comparison with a probe display, (3) attended representations are strengthened in WM, (4) not-attended representations are removed from WM, (5) a retro-cue to the retrieval target provides a head start for its retrieval before decision making, and (6) attention protects the selected representation from perceptual interference. The extant evidence provides support for the last four of these hypotheses.

Twitter Demographics

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Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 200 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Germany 1 <1%
Switzerland 1 <1%
United Kingdom 1 <1%
Poland 1 <1%
Sweden 1 <1%
Netherlands 1 <1%
Canada 1 <1%
Unknown 193 97%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Ph. D. Student 42 21%
Student > Bachelor 35 18%
Student > Master 35 18%
Researcher 30 15%
Student > Doctoral Student 21 11%
Other 37 19%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Psychology 128 64%
Neuroscience 28 14%
Unspecified 23 12%
Philosophy 4 2%
Engineering 4 2%
Other 13 7%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 1. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 25 April 2016.
All research outputs
#11,132,307
of 12,516,641 outputs
Outputs from Attention, Perception & Psychophysics
#1,173
of 1,272 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#219,616
of 263,220 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Attention, Perception & Psychophysics
#49
of 62 outputs
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