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Title: The role of sensory history and stimulus context in human time perception : adaptive and integrative distortions of perceived duration
Author: Fulcher, Corinne
ISNI:       0000 0004 7231 6901
Awarding Body: University of Bradford
Current Institution: University of Bradford
Date of Award: 2017
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This thesis documents a series of experiments designed to investigate the mechanisms subserving sub-second duration processing in humans. Firstly, duration aftereffects were generated by adapting to consistent duration information. If duration aftereffects represent encoding by neurons selective for both stimulus duration and non-temporal stimulus features, adapt-test changes in these features should prevent duration aftereffect generation. Stimulus characteristics were chosen which selectively target differing stages of the visual processing hierarchy. The duration aftereffect showed robust interocular transfer and could be generated using a stimulus whose duration was defined by stimuli invisible to monocular mechanisms, ruling out a pre-cortical locus. The aftereffects transferred across luminance-defined visual orientation and facial identity. Conversely, the duration encoding mechanism was selective for changes in the contrast-defined envelope size of a Gabor and showed broad spatial selectivity which scaled proportionally with adapting stimulus size. These findings are consistent with a second stage visual spatial mechanism that pools input across proportionally smaller, spatially abutting filters. A final series of experiments investigated the pattern of interaction between concurrently presented cross-modal durations. When duration discrepancies were small, multisensory judgements were biased towards the modality with higher precision. However, when duration discrepancies were large, perceived duration was compressed by both longer and shorter durations from the opposite modality, irrespective of unimodal temporal reliability. Taken together, these experiments provide support for a duration encoding mechanism that is tied to mid-level visual spatial processing. Following this localised encoding, supramodal mechanisms then dictate the combination of duration information across the senses.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Time perception ; Duration ; Human ; Adaptation ; Integration ; Subsecond ; Vision ; Audition ; Psychophysics ; Modelling ; Sensory history ; Stimulus context