Testing the channel-based model of duration perception

William Curran, Christopher P Benton, Paul B Hibbard, Julie M Harris

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


The channel-based model of duration perception postulates the existence of neural mechanisms that respond selectively to a narrow range of stimulus durations centred on their preferred duration (Heron et al Proceedings of the Royal Society B 279 690–698). In principle the channel-based model could
explain recent reports of adaptation-induced, visual duration compression effects (Johnston et al Current Biology 16 472–479; Curran and Benton Cognition 122 252–257); from this perspective duration compression is a consequence of the adapting stimuli being presented for a longer duration than the test stimuli. In the current experiment observers adapted to a sequence of moving random dot patterns at the same retinal position, each 340ms in duration and separated by a variable (500–1000ms) interval. Following adaptation observers judged the duration of a 600ms test stimulus at the same location. The test stimulus moved in the same, or opposite, direction as the adaptor. Contrary to the channel-based
model’s prediction, test stimulus duration appeared compressed, rather than expanded, when it moved in the same direction as the adaptor. That test stimulus duration was not distorted when moving in the opposite direction further suggests that visual timing mechanisms are influenced by additional neural processing associated with the stimulus being timed.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2012
EventECVP European conference on visual perception - Sardinia, Alghero, Italy
Duration: 01 Sep 2012 → …


ConferenceECVP European conference on visual perception
Period01/09/2012 → …

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