Recently published: parafoveal vision changes with normal ageing

One of the themes of our work is to investigate how normal, healthy ageing affects visual perception. An example of a visual perceptual phenomenon that we are interested in is illustrated below, whereby the contrast of a pattern is reduced when surrounded by another pattern (i.e. non-uniform background) compared to when it appears against a uniform background.

contrast suppression

The inside circle (left) appears lower in contrast when surrounded than when it is presented alone against a uniform grey background (right).

Such contextual effects in younger and older observers have been studied extensively in the very centre of our vision (foveally). In our latest paper investigating age-related changes to visual perception, we have studied this visual phenomenon non-centrally (parafoveally) and find that foveal and parafoveal perception is differently affected by age. These types of processes in non-central vision are thought to form the basic building blocks by which the visual system is able to identify objects of importance to then direct our eye movements towards.

You can read the full version of the paper in the Journal of Vision for free here.

 

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