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Title: Follow my lead : behavioural and neural mechanisms of gaze leading in joint attention
Author: Stephenson, Lisa
ISNI:       0000 0004 7652 6412
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2018
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Monitoring others’ actions, and our control over those actions, is essential to human social reciprocity. One such everyday social interaction is joint attention when one person follows another’s direction of gaze to a referent object. When initiating joint attention (also known as “gaze leading”), reciprocal gaze responses must be processed rapidly. Therefore, we need to detect and sense agency over these social outcomes. If we cause an outcome, a compression of perception of time occurs between our action and its outcome. This phenomenon is termed temporal binding (also called intentional binding), believed to evidence an implicit sense of agency. Using a temporal binding paradigm, Experiments 1-5 evidence an implicit sense of agency for gaze shift responses to gaze leading. Using an old/new recognition paradigm, Experiments 6-7 evidence equal, high performance for recognition of unfamiliar faces for both previously encountered congruent and incongruent gaze responses to gaze leading. Experiment 8 employed electroencephalography to explore whether the neural system differentiates congruency of gaze shift elicited by gaze leading, finding, for the first time, N170-like evidence of this. Combining previous literature and the new findings in this thesis, a new neuro-cognitive model of joint and shared attention is proposed. This encapsulates the processes at work for both the gaze leader and gaze follower, the associated neural mechanisms and the subsequent social cognition processes which can ensue.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available