Neural correlates of divided attention

multiple features and multiple targets

Our recent study investigated how the brain focuses on stimulus features relevant to the goal at hand in situations involving either single or multiple goals to keep in mind.

Attentional mechanisms enable the enhancement of information that is relevant to current goals, while inhibiting goal-irrelevant information. As people typically have multiple goals that are often performed simultaneously, this mechanism needs to be flexible in allocating processing resources to reach these goals optimally.

The study demonstrated a clear distinction in neural signatures for stimuli containing one, two, or none of the relevant features. Importantly, this method seems to be suitable for specifying the differences in attentional mechanisms between autistic individuals and their peers.

Research areas

  • Cognitive flexibility
  • Feature & object representation
  • Goal-directed behaviour