Attention deployment during memorizing and executing complex instructions

Jens K. Apel, Gavin F. Revie, Angelo Cangelosi, Rob Ellis, Jeremy Goslin, Martin H. Fischer

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)


    We investigated the mental rehearsal of complex action instructions by recording spontaneous eye movements of healthy adults as they looked at objects on a monitor. Participants heard consecutive instructions, each of the form "move [object] to [location]''. Instructions were only to be executed after a go signal, by manipulating all objects successively with a mouse. Participants re-inspected previously mentioned objects already while listening to further instructions. This rehearsal behavior broke down after 4 instructions, coincident with participants' instruction span, as determined from subsequent execution accuracy. These results suggest that spontaneous eye movements while listening to instructions predict their successful execution.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)249-259
    Number of pages11
    JournalExperimental Brain Research
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2011


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