Do the eyes have it? A comparison of eye-movement and attentional-probe based approaches to indexing attentional control within the anti-saccade paradigm.

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Abstract

Individual differences in the ability to control visual attention, often termed ‘attentional control’, have been of particular interest to cognitive researchers. This has led to the development of numerous tasks intended to measure attentional control, including the antisaccade task. While attentional performance on the antisaccade task is typically indexed through the recording of eye movements, increasingly researchers are reporting the use of probe-based methods of indexing attentional performance on the task. Critically, no research has yet determined the convergence of measures yielded by each of these assessment methods, nor compared the reliability of these measures. The purpose of the present study was to examine whether antisaccade cost measures yielded by a probe-based adaptation of the task converge with antisaccade cost measures yielded by an eye movement task in the sample of individuals, and whether these alternative approaches have comparable levels of psychometric reliability. Ninety-three individuals completed an eye movement task and a probe-based task at two assessment times, and an index of antisaccade cost was computed from each task at each assessment time. Analyses revealed that the antisaccade cost index yielded by each task demonstrated high internal reliability (eye-movement, rSB = .92; probe-based, rSB = .80-.84) and high test-retest reliability (eye-movement, rSB = .82; probe-based, rSB = .72), but modest measurement convergence (r = .21-.35). Findings suggest that probe-based and eye-movement based antisaccade tasks measure shared variance in attentional control, though their measures do not converge strongly enough to be considered equivalent measures of attentional control.
Original languageEnglish
JournalQuarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 17 Mar 2022

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