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Attentional Breadth Task
Script Author: Katja Borchert, Ph.D. (email@example.com) for Millisecond Software, LLC
last updated: 01-07-2020 by K. Borchert (firstname.lastname@example.org) for Millisecond Software, LLC
Script Copyright © 01-07-2020 Millisecond Software
This script implements an Attentional Breadth Task procedure.
The procedure takes advantage of related positions located on two circles of different radii around a
center stimulus (=> one circle is closer than the other) to assess effects of attentional broading/narrowing.
The procedure is described by:
Bosmans,G.,Braet,C.,Koster,E.,and DeRaedt,R.(2009). Attachment, security and attentional breadth
toward the attachment figure in middle childhood.
J. Clin.ChildAdolesc.Psychol. 38, 872–882.
Grol, M., & Raedt, R. D. (2014). Effects of centralStim1 mood on attentional breadth for centralStimal stimuli.
Frontiers in Psychology, 5, 1277.
The center stimuli in this script are faces displaying three different emotions.
The script can be adapted to run different stimuli.
Participants very briefly see pictures of faces that display 3 different emotions (happy, neutral, sad)
in the center of the screen.
Together with each face, a black circle is presented in one of 16 locations around the center face.
The 16 locations are located on two circles around the center face: 8 locations are on a circle closer to the center;
8 locations are on a circle further away from the center. Each location on the inner circle is 'paired' with
a location on the outer circle.
After the face-location-circle display vanishes (68ms), participants are asked two questions
(always in the same order):
1. Select the emotion of the presented face
2. Select the axis that the black circle was presented on
the default set-up of the script takes appr. 15 minutes to complete
DATA FILE INFORMATION
The default data stored in the data files are:
(1) Raw data file: 'attentionalbreadthtask_raw*.iqdat' (a separate file for each participant)*
build: The specific Inquisit version used (the 'build') that was run
computer.platform: the platform the script was run on (win/mac/ios/android)
date, time, date and time script was run
subject, group, with the current subject/groupnumber
script.sessionid: with the current session id
blockcode, blocknum: the name and number of the current block (built-in Inquisit variable)
trialcode, trialnum: the name and number of the currently recorded trial (built-in Inquisit variable)
Note: trialnum is a built-in Inquisit variable; it counts all trials run; even those
that do not store data to the data file such as feedback trials. Thus, trialnum
may not reflect the number of main trials run per block.
values.countTestBlocks: counts the number of test blocks run
values.counttrials: counts the number of trials run (resets after each block)
values.distance: 1 = Near;
2 = Far (the distance of the target circle to the center)
values.stim: stores the currently presented picture file
values.stimNumber: the itemnumber of the currently presented picture file
values.centralStim: the presented Central Stim
1 = centralStim1 (here: happy);
2 = centralStim2 (here: neutral);
3 = centralStim3 (here: sad)
values.selectedCentralStim: the selected central stim:
1 = happy;
2 = neutral;
3 = sad
values.centralStimACC: 1 = the central stim (here: emotion) was correctly selected;
0 = otherwise
values.centralStimRT: latency (in ms) of responding to central stim (here: emotion) question (measured from onset of question)
values.targetAxis: the axis the target circle is presented on (1-8)
values.selectedAxis: the selected axis (1-8)
values.axisACC: 2 = the target axis was correctly selected;
0 = otherwise
values.axisRT: latency (in ms) of responding to axis question (measured from onset of question)
(2) Summary data file: 'attentionalbreadthtask_summary*.iqdat' (a separate file for each participant)*
computer.platform: the platform the script was run on (win/mac/ios/android)
script.startdate: date script was run
script.starttime: time script was started
script.subjectid: assigned subject id number
script.groupid: assigned group id number
script.sessionid: assigned session id number
script.elapsedtime: time it took to run script (in ms); measured from onset to offset of script
script.completed: 0 = script was not completed (prematurely aborted);
1 = script was completed (all conditions run)
propCorrect_centralStimIdentifications: overall proportion correct identification of the central stim (here: emotion) across all test trials
meanRT_centralStimIdentifications: mean latency of correct central stim identification (here: emotion) across all test trials
deleteFromAnalysis: 1 = more than 50% of trials in at least one of the 6 trialtypes were deleted due to poor central stim identification
(see Grol & Raedt, 2014, p.5)
0 = otherwise
propCorrectAxis_centralStim1Near: proportion correct axis selection in 'centralStim1 near' (here: happyNear) condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
propCorrectAxis_centralStim1Far: proportion correct axis selection in 'centralStim1 far' (here: happyFar)condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
propCorrectAxis_centralStim2Near: proportion correct axis selection in 'centralStim3 near' (here: neutralNear)condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
propCorrectAxis_centralStim2Far: proportion correct axis selection in 'centralStim3 far' (here: neutralFar)condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
propCorrectAxis_centralStim3Near: proportion correct axis selection in 'centralStim2 near' (here: sadNear)condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
propCorrectAxis_centralStim3Far: proportion correct axis selection in 'centralStim2 far' (here: sadFar)condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
Attentional Narrowing Index (ANI='accuracy target stimulus close to face' - 'accuracy target stimulus far from face)':
=> positive ANI means that participant identified the correct axis of circles on the inner circle more often than
on the outer circle
meanRT_centralStim1Near: correct response time of axis selection in 'centralStim1 near' condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
meanRT_centralStim1Far: correct response time of axis selection in 'centralStim1 far' condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
meanRT_centralStim2Near: correct response time of axis selection in 'centralStim3 near' condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
meanRT_centralStim2Far: correct response time of axis selection in 'centralStim3 far' condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
meanRT_centralStim3Near: correct response time of axis selection in 'centralStim2 near' condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
meanRT_centralStim3Far: correct response time of axis selection in 'centralStim2 far' condition (when central stim was correctly selected)
* separate data files: to change_innerradius_ to one data file for all participants (on Inquisit Lab only), go to section
"DATA" and follow further instructions
(1) Practice1: 8 trials with a display duration of 250ms
(2) Practice2: 8 trials with a display duration of 68ms
(2 faces are used during practice; one female and one male)
(3) Test: 3 blocks of 48 trials each
- each block runs 8 repetition of the 6 trialtypes
(centralStim1-near, centralStim1-far, centralStim2-near, centralStim2-far, centralStim3-near, centralStim3-far)
- each trialtype selects the target axis randomly without replacement from the 8 different axis
(thus each trialtype runs each axis once per block)
- each trialtype selects the face randomly without replacement from the 8 different faces
(thus each trialtype runs each face one per block)
fixation (iti: 1000ms) -> face/dots/circle display (68ms) -> centralStim (here: emotion) selection trial (unlimited time) -> axis selection trial (unlimited time)
Central Stimuli are taken from the NimStim set of facial expression database:
Tottenham, N., Tanaka, J. W., Leon, A. C., McCarry, T., Nurse, M., Hare, T. A., … Nelson, C. (2009).
The NimStim set of facial expressions: Judgments from untrained research participants.
Psychiatry Research, 168(3), 242–249. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.psychres.2008.05.006
* 8 faces per expression (altogether 8 faces used), all closed mouth
* 4 male and 4 female faces per expression (various ethnicities)
* images were cut to display main part of face only
The stimuli can be exchanged under section Editable Stimuli
Note: if more or fewer than 3 categories of central stimuli should be run,
the trials called as well as instruction trials need to be adjusted accordingly.
provided by Millisecond Software - can be edited under section Editable Instructions
check below for (relatively) easily editable parameters, stimuli, instructions etc.
Keep in mind that you can use this script as a template and therefore always "mess" with the entire code
to further customize your experiment.
The parameters you can change are:
Display Sizes: in this script the sizing of the stimuli is done PROPORTIONAL to the current screen.
(Script 'attentionalbreadhtask_absolutesizing.iqx' defines the stimuli in mm instead. If the monitor is too small,
this script alerts the user and terminates the script)
The following sizes were used by Grol & Raedt (2014):
-> originally presented on a 19inch monitor
"One circle appeared at 4.5cm from the central face at 10deg of the visual angle, the other circle appeared at 11.2cm
from the central face at 25deg of the visual angle.The gray dots were arranged in pairs of two, one close and one far, situated on one
of eight imperceptible axes. Simultaneously with presentation of the face and gray dots,a smaller black circle with a diameter of
1.3 cm appeared in one of the gray dots, either close or far."(p.4)
/innercircleproportion: the proportional radius of the inner circle of gray dots during presentation (default: 0.2)
/outercircleproportion: the proportional radius of the inner circle of gray dots during presentation (default: 0.45)
/numbercircleproportion: the proportional radius of the circle of numbers around the outer circle during trial.selectAxis (default: 0.35)
/grayDotSize: the proportional size of the gray dots (default: 8%)
/blackCircleSize: the proportional size of the black circle (default: 4%)
/centralStimSize: the proportional size of the image in the center of the screen (here: face image) (default: 10%)
/practiceTargetDuration: the duration (in ms) of the centerStim-circle-dot display during the first practice (default: 250ms)
/targetDuration: the duration (in ms) of the centerStim-circle-dot display during the second practice and test (default: 68ms)
/iti: the intertrial interval (in ms) (default: 1000ms)
Note: the intertrial interval displays a fixation displaypicture in this script
/presentPracticeFeedback: true (1) = feedback is provided during the practice session
false (0) = no feedbach is provided