NEUROSCIENCE & PSYCHOLOGY POSTGRADUATE SOCIETY SEM
Friday February 24th 2012, 12:00pm
AGE RELATED DIFFERENCES IN VISUAL EPISODIC MEMORY: AN ERP STUDY
Continuing research within the department has looked at the cognitive changes in normal healthy aging with the hope of differentiating such changes from pathological deficits associated with Alzheimer?s disease. I will be discussing my research which will be looking closely at age ? related differences in a visual memory paradigm, identifying ERP components reflecting those processes susceptible to change. This will aim to help provide a more comprehensive understanding of the aging brain as well as conditions such as Alzheimer?s disease.
PRESENTED BY
Sadia Shah

12:15pm: CAN YOU JUDGE A "CROOK" BY THEIR COVER?
Faces can impact on judgements, and perceptions of trustworthiness. While previous research has produced mixed results, there have been suggestions that accurate judgements are often possible using only facial information. Related to this are the findings that smiling promotes positive judgements of trustworthiness, while frowning results in more negative judgements. It has also been shown that additional deliberation can negatively impact decisions, including facial judgements. Here we show that accurate trustworthiness judgements, based on a 'real world' common measure can be made from faces, specifically by using expression. This accuracy was also shown to decrease as deliberation increased. This contrasts with previous suggestions that such 'cheater detection' was only possible if viewing a face at the moment of deception. It also expands on previous research that showed similar results but this study uses a common measure whereby the distinction of relative trustworthiness is more internally valid. One characteristic of the effect is that accuracy increases with less deliberation, which indicates that the process is somewhat automatic. Given the implications in areas such as the criminal courts, or in political elections, this finding provides a valuable insight in to the processes that make humans cooperate and trust.
PRESENTED BY
Joseph McCarthy

12:30pm: FLUCTUATIONS IN VISUAL AWARENESS: MOTION-INDUCED BLINDNESS AND BINOCULAR RIVALRY
Motion-induced blindness (MIB) and binocular rivalry (BR) are examples of multistable phenomena in which our perception varies despite constant retinal input. It has been suggested that neural representations of objects in BR and MIB are subject to competition at some level of cortical visual processing, and that BR and MIB might share a common underlying mechanism. However, such a common mechanism was suggested by comparing temporal characteristics of MIB and BR across studies. In this study we sought to investigate the relationship between perceptual events in BR and MIB in a novel experimental paradigm that relates both phenomena in single display. Our results suggest that MIB and BR were both affected by motion, but not by rivalry in the mask. Target size had a significant effect on normalized target disappearance as well as perceptual reversals in BR. On the other hand contrast of dichoptic target dots in the left and right eye had a significant effect on perceptual reversals in BR but not on target disappearance. In summary, the different temporal patterns of perceptual events in MIB and BR suggest that both phenomena are relatively independent and that MIB is likely to occur at a later stage of visual processing than BR.
PRESENTED BY
Katarzyna Jaworska