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Age-Related Changes in the Functional Visual Field: Futher Evidence for an Inverse Age X Eccentricity Effect

By Aart C. Kooijman, Wiebo H. Brouwer, Frans W. Cornelissen and Tanja R.M. Coeckelbergh


We assessed the performance of younger and older individuals by using the Attended Field of View test, a visual search task in which eye movements were allowed. When adjusting for slower processing in the older age group by log transformation, we observed significant effects of age, eccentricity, and Age 3 Eccentricity. Contrary to most previous findings, the Age3Eccentricity effect was ‘‘inverted’’ in that the difference between the age groups decreased as a function of eccentricity. The finding that the eccentricity effect of younger individuals was larger than that of older individuals was caused by large age-related differences in sensitivity for centrally located targets, even though differences with regard to foveal resolution were controlled. The results further indicated that, given a brief amount of time, older persons could process a smaller field of view than younger persons. Consequently, older persons were forced to resort to serial scanning for a larger part of the display, whereas younger persons could process a larger area in parallel.

Year: 2004
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