The effects of response priming on the planning and execution of goal-directed movements in the presence of a distracting stimulus
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Two models of selective reaching have been proposed to account for deviations in movement trajectories in cluttered environments. The response vector model predicts movement trajectories should deviate towards or away from the location a distractor of little or large salience, respectively. In contrast, the response activation model predicts that a distractor with large salience should cause movement deviations towards it whereas a distractor with little salience should not influence the movement. The precuing technique was combined with the distractor interference paradigm to test these predictions. Results indicate that when the target was presented at the precued (salient) location, movements were unaffected by a distractor. Conversely, when the distractor was presented at the precued location while the target was presented at an uncued (non-salient) location, participants demonstrated increased reaction times and trajectory deviations towards the location of the distractor. These findings are consistent with the model of response activation.
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