The temporal order judgment paradigm: Subcortical attentional contribution under exogenous and endogenous cueing conditions

David H. Zackon, Evanne J. Casson, Aftab Zafar, Lew Stelmach, Lyne Racette

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31 Scopus citations


The role of subcortical attentional processing was investigated under exogenous and endogenous cueing conditions. As retinotectal projections arise predominantly from the nasal retina i.e., temporal hemifield, subcortical attention should be distributed asymmetrically under monocular viewing conditions with a temporal hemifield advantage. We compared the results of monocular and binocular viewing conditions using a temporal order judgment (TOJ) paradigm. Subjects fixated a centrally located cross and two stimuli were presented with a variable onset asynchrony. Three experiments were conducted: no cue, exogenous cue and endogenous cue. Subjects reported which stimulus seemed to appear first. An effect consistent with subcortical processing was found under exogenous cueing conditions. No such effect was found under endogenous cueing conditions. We believe that subcortical attentional processing in response to an exogenous cue facilitates rapid shifts in attention towards environmental stimuli. We found no evidence for subcortical processing in voluntary directed attention and believe this process to be cortical in nature.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)511-520
Number of pages10
Issue number5
StatePublished - Feb 1 1999



  • Naso-temporal asymmetry
  • Subcortical processing
  • Visual attention
  • Visual pathways

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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