Poster B6, Sunday, March 26, 8:00 – 10:00 am, Pacific Concourse
A Mobile Cognition Approach To Attention: Exploring Modulations Of P300 Event-Related Potentials In The Real-World
Simon Ladouce1, David I. Donaldson1, Paul Dudchenko1, Magdalena Ietswaart1; 1University of Stirling, Scotland (UK)
Knowledge about the neural correlates of attentional processing comes largely from controlled lab-based research. Far less is known about how these processes respond in complex real-world environments, but recent developments in mobile EEG now allow neural measurement in motion. In a first set to establish this approach we used mobile EEG to examine attention, assessing whether classic P300 Event-Related Potential auditory odd-ball effects could be measured during walking. To demonstrate viability, Experiment 1 (n=11) contrasted standing still and walking conditions. Robust P300 effects were measurable both in standing and walking conditions, but the P300 was significantly smaller during walking. We replicated and extended this finding in Experiment 2 (n=24), again contrasting P300 during walking and standing still. In addition, we controlled the contribution of the mechanics of walking by adding a wheelchair condition, and controlled the influence of visual input related to moving through the environment by adding a treadmill condition. P300 amplitude was reduced when participants were in motion, regardless of the mode of travel. By contrast, P300 effects recorded while participants walked on a treadmill were equivalent in magnitude to those measured standing still. These data confirm that the reduction of attention was not due to walking per se, but rather to movement through the environment. Together, the findings demonstrate the potential of a real-world mobile cognition approach to brain imaging, reduce methodological concern about motion artefacts preventing measurement, and reveal detectable reductions in attentional processing when participants are engaged in real-world behaviour.
Topic Area: ATTENTION: Auditory