simon and chabris

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  • simon and chabris
    • inattentional blindness: being unable to see an event or object in your line of sight because you are focused on other elements.
      • conclusion: inattentional blindness can occur for period of time
    • controls: same number of passes , same models, same time span before unexpected event occurred.
    • standardised procedure = high reliability due to easy replicability
  • exerimental design= independent measures
  • sample= 228 participants undergraduates at harvard university
    • rewards: some no payment some had large candy bar, some had a payment in cash.
  • independent variables: 1. transparent/opaque video. 2. black or white teams. 3. easy or difficult. 4. the gorilla or the umbrella woman.
    • 3 questions asked: 1. while you were counting- did you notice anything unusual/ 2. did you notice anything other than the 6 players/. 3. did you see a gorilla/ woman carrying an umbrella- walking across the screen?
      • the participants were fully debriefed after watching the video and being asked the questions, if needed to they would also be shown the video again.
        • conclusion: the level of inattentional blindness depends on the difficulty of the primary task.
          • conclusion: individuals are more likely to notice unexpected events if these events are visually similar to the events they are paying attention to.
            • conclusion: objects can pass through the area we are focused on and still not be "seen" if they are not specifically being attended to.
  • results: overall findings : across all conditions, the unexpected event was missed by 46% of participants
    • data from 36 out of the original 228 participants were omitted because they had either seen the video before, lost count or made an inaccurate count of passes.
  • ethics upheld: informed consent, debriefing.
  • validity: highly controlled, could have demand characteristics
  • ecological validity: no, not true to life video.
  • reliability: replicable , number of ppts suggest trend.


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