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  • Open Access

Faces attract infants' attention in complex displays

  • 1,
  • 2,
  • 2 and
  • 2
Annals of General Psychiatry20087(Suppl 1):S276

https://doi.org/10.1186/1744-859X-7-S1-S276

Published: 17 April 2008

Keywords

  • Public Health
  • Human Face
  • Adult Experiment
  • Object Distractors
  • Complex Display

Background

Hersler and Hochstein [1] found in adult experiments that face “pop-out”, that is they are looked at earlier and for longer, when presented together with a variety of different objects.

Materials and methods

In contrast to “classical” “pop out” studies we don't vary the number of distractors. We explored this effect in 6-month old infants. Twelve slides were presented to infants, each one including one human face and five different object distractors. The objects are similar to faces regarding their shape, colour, luminance and familiarity. Also, half of the faces have direct gaze, the other averted.

Results

Results indicate that faces “pop out” among distractors. Direct and averted gaze do not differ from each other regarding pop-out effects.

Conclusions

The implications of these results are discussed.

Declarations

Acknowledgements

I wish to thank Prof Mark Johnson, Dr Teodora Gliga, Dr Mayada Elsabbach all of whom helped me in the experiment, and Dr Kyrana Tsapkini, who although far away, has been very supportive to me during this year.

Authors’ Affiliations

(1)
Department of Psychology, University College London-Birkbeck College, London, UK
(2)
Department of Psychology, Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development, Birkbeck College, London, UK

References

  1. Hershler O, Hochstein S: At first sight: A high-level pop out effect for faces. Vision Research. 2005, 45: 1707-1724. 10.1016/j.visres.2004.12.021.View ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Farroni T, Csibra G, Simion F, Johnson MH: Eye contact detection in humans from birth. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2002, 99: 9602-9605. 10.1073/pnas.152159999.PubMed CentralView ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Johnson M, Dziurawiec S, Ellis H, Morton J: Newborns preferential tracking of face-like stimuli and its' subsequent decline. Cognition. 1991, 40: 1-19. 10.1016/0010-0277(91)90045-6.View ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright

© Andravizou et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2008

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd.

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