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Psychophysical correlates of global motion processing in the aging visual system: a critical review

Hutchinson, Claire V.; Arena, Amanda; Allen, Harriet A.; Ledgeway, Tim


Claire V. Hutchinson

Amanda Arena

Professor of Lifespan Psychology

Tim Ledgeway


The consequences of visual decline in aging have a fundamental and wide-reaching impact on age-related quality of life. It is of concern therefore that evidence suggests that normal aging is accompanied by impairments in the ability to effectively encode global motion. Global motion perception is a fundamentally important process. It enables us to determine the overall velocity of spatially extensive objects in the world and provides us with information about our own body movements. Here, we review what is currently known about the effects of age on performance for encoding the global motion information available in random dot kinematograms (RDKs), a class of stimuli widely used to probe the mechanisms underlying motion perception. We conclude that age-related deficits in global motion perception are not all encompassing. Rather, they appear to be specific to certain stimulus conditions. We also examine evidence for an interaction between age and gender and consider the efficacy of techniques such as visual perceptual learning that may attenuate some of the visual deficits in the older adult population.


Hutchinson, C. V., Arena, A., Allen, H. A., & Ledgeway, T. (2012). Psychophysical correlates of global motion processing in the aging visual system: a critical review. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 36(4),

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 1, 2012
Deposit Date Nov 18, 2014
Publicly Available Date Nov 18, 2014
Journal Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews
Electronic ISSN 0149-7634
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 36
Issue 4
Keywords Age; Global motion; Random dot kinematograms
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 36(4), (2012), doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2012.02.009


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