Looking ahead: Anticipatory cueing of attention to objects others will look at

Katherine Joyce, Kimberley Schenke, Andrew Bayliss, Patric Bach

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)
22 Downloads (Pure)


Seeing a face gaze at an object elicits rapid attention shifts towards the same object. We tested whether gaze cuing is predictive: do people shift their attention towards objects others are merely expected to look at? Participants categorized objects while a face either looked at this object, at another object, or straight ahead. Unbeknownst to participants, one face would only look at drinks and the other at foods. We tested whether attention was drawn towards objects “favoured” by a face even when currently looking straight ahead. Indeed, while gaze expectations initially had a disruptive effect, participants did shift attention to the faces‟ favoured objects once learning had been established, as long as emotional expressions had indicated personal relevance of the object to the individual. These data support predictive models of social perception, which assume that predictions can drive perception and action, as if these stimuli were directly perceived.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-81
Number of pages8
JournalCognitive Neuroscience
Issue number1-4
Early online date9 Jul 2015
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • gaze cueing
  • joint attention
  • predictive coding
  • prediction
  • attention
  • action observation

Cite this