What does the nature of the stimuli tell us about the global precedence effect?

Nicolas Poirel, Arlette Pineau, Emmanuel Mellet
Acta Psychologica. 2008-01-01; 127(1): 1-11
DOI: 10.1016/j.actpsy.2006.12.001

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1. Acta Psychol (Amst). 2008 Jan;127(1):1-11. Epub 2007 Jan 22.

What does the nature of the stimuli tell us about the Global Precedence Effect?

Poirel N(1), Pineau A, Mellet E.

Author information:
(1)Groupe d’Imagerie Neurofonctionnelle (GIN) UMR 6194, CNRS, CEA, University of
Caen and University of Paris V, France.

The “Global Precedence Effect” (GPE) is a well-established phenomenon
characterised by a global advantage (global response times that are faster than
local response times) and an interference effect from global distractors during
identification of local targets but not vice versa. In the present study, two
experiments were carried out to examine how the GPE is affected by the
meaningfulness of the stimuli. Using global/local compound stimuli based on
either meaningful or meaningless stimuli, we found, on the one hand, that the
global level was always processed faster than the local level, irrespective of
the meaningfulness of the material. On the other hand, results show that the
interference effect occurred only with meaningful stimuli. We propose that
automatic identification of meaningful stimuli plays a role in the interference
effect. These results suggest that the GPE involves both “sensory mechanisms”
(responsible for the global advantage) and “cognitive mechanisms” (responsible
for the interference effect).

DOI: 10.1016/j.actpsy.2006.12.001
PMID: 17240344 [Indexed for MEDLINE]

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