Dirk Kerzel

Dirk Kerzel

Affiliations: Faculty of Psychology and Science of Education, Psychology Section

Group name: Cognitive Psychology

Domains: Perception, Attention and Cognition

Keywords: cognitive capacity, distraction, information processing

Research activities

Only a small portion of the information that arrives on our receptor organs is fully processed. Current estimates of the maximum number of objects that are retained by the cognitive system are as low as ONE object. On the one hand, this shows that our cognitive capacity is severely limited. On the other hand, this limitation shows that we are able to efficiently select stimuli for further processing. Selection is necessary to ensure successful interaction with the environment. For instance, we are unable to grasp more than a single object at a time; hence the need for selection. Despite the efficiency of selection, salient information, such as flashing lights, may disrupt processing of action-relevant objects. One of the questions we are pursuing is how distracting information changes the execution of hand or eye movements. Are we able to pursue a moving object with the eyes if other, to-be-ignored stimuli suddenly pop up?

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Contact

Faculté de psychologie et sciences de l’éducation
Université de Genève
Email: Dirk.Kerzel@unige.ch