The use of a neutral baseline in the dot probe task (Koster, Crombez, Verschuere, & de Houwer, 2004; Salemink, van den Hout, & Kindt, 2007), or the use of an emotional spatial cuing paradigm in which different kinds of emotional stimuli (faces, pictures, or words) are used as cues (Amir, Elias, Klumpp, & Przeworski, 2003; Broomfield & Turpin, 2005, Experiment 1; Fox et al., 2001; Fox, Russo, & Dutton, 2002; Yiend & Mathews, 2001) have revealed that it is the disengagement component of orienting which is affected (delayed) in anxiety.
That is true not only for asterisks, as in the original ANT, but also for words, as shown in the present study, although the underlying mechanisms and the efficiency in cuing target location may differ in each case (see differences in the orienting effect between asterisks and words illustrated in Figure 2).
Cuing and Block of trials were manipulated within participants, while Fixation Cue was manipulated between participants.
Before the experimental trials started, participants completed 16 practice trials (2 trials for each combination of target-letter, target-location, and cuing).
Automated Attention Guidance: Costs and Benefit of Cuing
This form of attentional tunneling, attributable to cuing, has been replicated by Yeh and Wickens (2001b) and Davison and Wickens (1999).
The resulting time course of cuing effects was very similar to the one usually observed in detection tasks.
More importantly, if the reduction of Spatial Stroop by peripheral cues systematically found in our previous experiments is really due to a process of cue-target event integration, then the presence of distractors should eliminate the reduction of Spatial Stroop on cued trials, and a null modulation of Cuing on Spatial Stroop should be found.
Nicoll (1992) found that cuing provided advantages in the first 30 s of the visual search process.
Previous studies have examined the effects of imperfect cuing systems, including missed targets and/or cued nontargets (e.g., Skitka et al., 1999; Wickens, Conejo, & Gempler, 1990: Wickens, Gempler, & Morphew, 2000: Yeh & Wickens, 2000, 2001; Yeh, Wickens, & Seagull, 1998).
The focus of the experiment is on intelligent target cuing, a form of automation that directs the user's attention to regions of the scene assumed by automation to be important (Entin, 1998; Swennsen, Hessel, & Herman, 1977; Yeh, Wickens, & Seagull, 1999).
Such attentional effects have been observed in cuing devices involving aircraft maintenance fault inspection (Ockerman & Pritchett, 1998) and military targets (Merlo, Wickens, & Yeh, 1999; Yeh et al., 1999).
Such cuing can readily be presented head down as well as head up.
Supporting this difference in cuing benefits between superimposed and nonsuperimposed locations, in HUD research we have found that the benefits of conformal cuing of enduring elements (locating the runway) are considerably enhanced when the cue is presented in a head-up rather than a head-down location (Fadden & Wickens, 1997; Wickens & Long, 1995).
Thus both real and simulated auditory spatial cuing
can potentially produce dramatic improvements in visual search performance for both real and virtual environments.