HomePublications

Anticipation in real-world scenes: The role of visual context and visual memory

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access permissions

Open

Documents

  • Manuscript

    Accepted author manuscript, 1.5 MB, PDF document

DOI

Authors

Organisational units

Abstract

The human sentence processor is able to make rapid predictions about upcoming linguistic input. For example, upon hearing the verb eat, anticipatory eye-movements are launched toward edible objects in a visual scene (Altmann & Kamide, 1999). However, the cognitive mechanisms that underlie anticipation remain to be elucidated in ecologically valid contexts. Previous research has, in fact, mainly used clip-art scenes and object arrays, raising the possibility that anticipatory eye-movements are limited to displays containing a small number of objects in a visually impoverished context. In Experiment 1, we confirm that anticipation effects occur in real-world scenes and investigate the mechanisms that underlie such anticipation. In particular, we demonstrate that real-world scenes provide contextual information that anticipation can draw on: When the target object is not present in the scene, participants infer and fixate regions that are contextually appropriate (e.g., a table upon hearing eat). Experiment 2 investigates whether such contextual inference requires the co-presence of the scene, or whether memory representations can be utilized instead. The same real-world scenes as in Experiment 1 are presented to participants, but the scene disappears before the sentence is heard. We find that anticipation occurs even when the screen is blank, including when contextual inference is required. We conclude that anticipatory language processing is able to draw upon global scene representations (such as scene type) to make contextual inferences. These findings are compatible with theories assuming contextual guidance, but posit a challenge for theories assuming object-based visual indices. 

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1995–2024
JournalCognitive Science
Volume40
Issue number8
Early online date30 Oct 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016
Peer-reviewedYes

Keywords

    Research areas

  • Anticipation in language processing, Contextual guidance, Visual world, Blank screen paradigm, Eye-tracking

Bibliographic note

Copyright © 2015 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

Downloads statistics

No data available

View graph of relations

ID: 73320154