Processing of multisensory dynamic information

TitleProcessing of multisensory dynamic information
Publication TypeThesis
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsSanabria D, Soto-Faraco S, Spence C
Academic DepartmentDepartment of Experimental Psychology
Date Published03/2005
UniversityUniversity of Oxford
Thesis TypePhD

The empirical research reported in this dissertation was conducted in order to address four important issues in crossmodal research. First, to investigate the role played by unimodal perceptual grouping in audiovisual interactions. Second, to ascertain the influence of spatial attention on audiovisual interactions. Third, to evaluate the effect of changes in hand posture on audiotactile interactions. Fourth, to extend our knowledge regarding the interaction between visual, auditory, and tactile motion information, with a special focus on the levels of information processing at which auditory and visual motion inputs interact. The use of apparent motion displays (that involve spatiotemporal sensory information), whereby the sequential presentation of two (or more) static stimuli from two (or more) different locations gives rise to the perception of a single object moving through space and time, provides the common link between the different parts of the thesis. The results of the first set of experiments go beyond previous research in crossmodal research, revealing that audiovisual interactions are constrained both by unimodal perceptual grouping processes and by spatial attention, and that the outcome of audiotactile interactions in spatiotemporal processing depends upon hand posture. The results of the second set of experiments sheds light on various issues regarding the influence of static and dynamic visuotactile information on the perception of auditory motion information. Furthermore, the research outlined here demonstrates that the perceptual and postperceptual components involved in audiovisual interactions in motion perception are independent. In sum, this thesis adds to the available empirical and theoretical research related to the question of how the information that reaches our senses interacts and is integrated giving rise to a coherent crossmodal representation of the external world.