One current research interest of the group lies in the area of sensory processing and how we use our senses to continuously predict the future positions and velocities of moving objects in our environment. Predictability of visual information has been shown to have a huge impact on our ability to behaviourally adapt to certain circumstances and certain tasks, particularly when the effect of our actions occurs at a delay (Rohde, van Dam & Ernst, 2014; van Dam & Stephens, 2018). What are the mechanisms for perceptual prediction, what are its limits and when does the prediction process reset? Own research suggests that resets of sensory processing may be marked by a reset of behaviour (e.g., eye movement planning) as shown by its link to changes in perception (see e.g., van Dam & van Ee, 2005; 2006). We are using psychophysical methods to investigate the perception of moving objects, combined with behavioural measures (e.g., eye/hand tracking movements).
- Investigate how the perceptual system updates the processing of motion information based on stimulus reliability.
- Investigate target-tracking behaviour for various target conditions and find the limits at which predicting target motion breaks down.
- Determine to role of prior knowledge and learned associations (e.g., van Dam & Ernst, 2010; 2015a; 2015b; van Dam, Hawellek, Ernst, 2013) in the prediction process.
- Use illusions such as motion dazzle and the curve-ball illusion to further investigate the interaction between motion and position sensing.