The unilateral field advantage in repetition detection: Effects of perceptual grouping and task demands

Matthew T. Hayes, Khena M. Swallow, Yuhong V. Jiang

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    6 Scopus citations


    This study examines interhemispheric interactions in detecting objects that are simultaneously repeated in an array of objects. Previous studies have shown that presenting two identical objects to a single hemifield speeds up repetition detection. This unilateral field advantage (UFA) is often attributed to the relatively low-level processing demands for detecting a perceptual repetition, and more specifically, to more efficient perceptual grouping processes within a hemisphere than between hemispheres. To directly examine the impact of perceptual grouping and task demands on interhemispheric interactions, we asked participants to judge whether four items, one presented in each visual quadrant, were all different, or whether any two were the same, along an instructed dimension. We found that in comparison with the UFA for identical objects, the UFA for repetition detection in accuracy was similar or greater when the matching objects were not perceptually identical and differed in color, size, or viewpoint. Thus, decreasing grouping strength and increasing computational complexity did not reduce the UFA. Results are interpreted in terms of the callosal degradation account of the UFA.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)583-590
    Number of pages8
    JournalAttention, Perception, and Psychophysics
    Issue number3
    StatePublished - Apr 2010

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    This research was inspired by Serena Butcher’s PhD thesis. It was supported by a University of Minnesota Grant in Aide to Y.V.J. and by an Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program grant to M.T.H.


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