Visual attention and display design

Jason McCarley, Kelly Steelman

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

    5 Citations (Scopus)


    Human operators in aviation, process control and other high-stress domains must monitor constantly for warnings and alerts among a rush of visual stimulation. More prosaically, website visitors and software users scan their computer screens for interesting or useful information among icons, online advertisements and other visual clutter. In all of these cases, performance hinges on the effective functioning of visual selective attention to find and extract useful information from the visual environment (Eriksen & Hoffman, 1973; Posner, 1980). At their best, failures of visual attention cause slowdowns and annoyances. At their worst, they cost lives and property. Well-designed displays that allow the viewer to readily find and extract the information required for the task at hand are crucial for efficient and safe performance of complex human-machine systems (Johnson & Proctor, 2004; Moray, 1993; Wickens & Holland, 2000; Wickens & McCarley, 2008).

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationNeuroergonomics
    Subtitle of host publicationA Cognitive Neuroscience Approach to Human Factors and Ergonomics
    PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
    Number of pages18
    ISBN (Electronic)9781137316523
    ISBN (Print)9780230299726
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2013


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