What factors influence perceptual selectivity?

Perceptual Selectivity:
Perceptual selectivity is the process by which individuals screen and select the various objects and stimuli that vie for their attention. Factors that influence this process include :

1. Characteristics of the Stimuli:

a. contrast-people notice a stimulus more if it stands out

b. novelty-new or different

c. familiarity

d. intensity

e. motion

f. repetition

g. size

2. Characteristics of the Perceiver

a. needs and motivation

b. values and beliefs

c. personality

d. learning

e. primacy-first impression

f. recency

3. Applications of Perceptual Selectivity

a. complex filtering process that determines which sensory data will receive attention

b. advertising
Men's eyes, and lots of big boobs.

"Selective sight": there are other things to look at but the magnet is the cleavage.
FRJ provides a direct test of the factors governing involuntary control of spatial attention, and the data clearly call for an acknowledgement of a contingency between subject goals and stimulus properties not previously recognized. Under conditions of spatial uncertainty, the capture of attention is contingent on what the observer is looking for. The contingent involuntary orienting hypothesis provides a unifying framework that parsimoniously accounts for this new data, as well previous results including those of Jonides and Yantis (1988). According to our hypothesis, abrupt onsets capture attention by the same mechanism as other properties such as discontinuities in color, intensity, form (Pashler, 1988, Experiment 6; Theeuwes, 1991b, 1992), or motion (Folk & Wright, 1992; Hillstrom & Yantis, 1992); these properties can elicit shifts of attention that violate subjects' intentions, but only in the presence of a corresponding attentional set. If there is anything special about abrupt onset, it will turn out to be in its widespread ecological significance as a harbinger of new, potentially important objects or events. If such is the case, it would be in an organisms' best interest to adopt default attentional control settings for abrupt onset.

There is no question that human attentional behavior is complex. One type of complexity involves the broad continuum from bottom-up exogenous control to top-down endogenous control, and further complexity is introduced by the structure of stimulus processing channels (e.g., dynamic vs. static properties). However, we continue to advocate the search for architectural hypotheses that reduce this welter of phenomena to a small number of mechanisms with relatively simple operating principles. We believe the work in FRJ is a promising step in this direction.
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