Grouping effects on spatial attention in visual search

Min Shik Kim, Kyle R. Cave

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


In visual search tasks, spatial attention selects the locations containing a target or a distractor with one of the target's features, implying that spatial attention is driven by target features (M.S. Kim & K. R. Cave, 1995). The authors measured the effects of location-based grouping processes in visual search. In searches for a color-shape combination (conjunction search), spatial probes indicated that a cluster of same-color or same-shape elements surrounding the target were grouped and selected together. However, in searches for a shape target (feature search), evidence for grouping by an irrelevant feature dimension was weaker or nonexistent. Grouping processes aided search for a visual target by selecting groups of locations that shared a common feature, although there was little or no grouping by an irrelevant feature when the target was defined by a unique salient feature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)326-352
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of General Psychology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1999 Oct 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Gender Studies
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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