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Facial Perception as a Configural Process
Journal of Vision
  • Devin Michael Burns, Missouri University of Science and Technology
  • Joseph W. Houpt
  • James T. Townsend

Configural or gestalt processing are general terms given to phenomena where the whole is different from the sum of its parts. Here we explore these phenomena through face perception, a known configural process. Split faces have often been employed as a manipulation that disrupts the configurality typically found in face processing. By applying systems factorial theory we can discover the differences in processing that result from splitting faces. This knowledge can help us further our understanding of what configurality is, and what qualities are necessary to observe it. We find that the difference in this case is due to a reduction in the workload capacity of the system, as measured by Townsend's capacity coefficient. Systems factorial technology is employed to draw conclusions regarding architecture, stopping rule, capacity and independence.

Psychological Science
Document Type
Article - Journal
Document Version
File Type
© 2010 Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), All rights reserved.
Publication Date
Citation Information
Devin Michael Burns, Joseph W. Houpt and James T. Townsend. "Facial Perception as a Configural Process" Journal of Vision Vol. 10 Iss. 7 (2010) p. 688 ISSN: 1534-7362
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