Visual Attention Techniques

These methodologies measure where and for how long infants look at different experimental displays. Using precisely designed stimuli, infants’ visual attention patterns reveal what kinds of changes they notice, what types of events they expect, and how they process visual information.

We use two different visual attention techniques in our research. The first technique is live looking time coding, in which a trained observer sits out of view of the infant and records how long the infant looks at different events using a computer program. The second technique makes use of an eye tracker to record detailed information about where infants are looking within a particular display. The eye tracker emits a harmless infrared light and measures the reflections from the infant’s cornea and pupil to precisely record the infant’s gaze patterns. The gaze behavior reveals new insights into infants’ perception and understanding of their environment.

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