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Sound segregation via embedded repetition is robust to inattention

Masutomi, K; Barascud, N; Kashino, M; McDermott, JH; Chait, M; (2016) Sound segregation via embedded repetition is robust to inattention. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance , 42 (3) pp. 386-400. 10.1037/xhp0000147. Green open access

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Abstract

The segregation of sound sources from the mixture of sounds that enters the ear is a core capacity of human hearing, but the extent to which this process is dependent on attention remains unclear. This study investigated the effect of attention on the ability to segregate sounds via repetition. We utilized a dual task design in which stimuli to be segregated were presented along with stimuli for a "decoy" task that required continuous monitoring. The task to assess segregation presented a target sound 10 times in a row, each time concurrent with a different distractor sound. McDermott, Wrobleski, and Oxenham (2011) demonstrated that repetition causes the target sound to be segregated from the distractors. Segregation was queried by asking listeners whether a subsequent probe sound was identical to the target. A control task presented similar stimuli but probed discrimination without engaging segregation processes. We present results from 3 different decoy tasks: a visual multiple object tracking task, a rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) digit encoding task, and a demanding auditory monitoring task. Load was manipulated by using high- and low-demand versions of each decoy task. The data provide converging evidence of a small effect of attention that is nonspecific, in that it affected the segregation and control tasks to a similar extent. In all cases, segregation performance remained high despite the presence of a concurrent, objectively demanding decoy task. The results suggest that repetition-based segregation is robust to inattention. (PsycINFO Database Record

Type: Article
Title: Sound segregation via embedded repetition is robust to inattention
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1037/xhp0000147
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/xhp0000147
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2015 The Author(s) This article has been published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Copyright for this article is retained by the author(s). Author(s) grant(s) the American Psychological Association the exclusive right to publish the article and identify itself as the original publisher.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > The Ear Institute
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1480943
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