Advantage Of Multisensory Integration

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When we open our eyes every morning to start our day, we experience a great amount of events, the majority of which are multisensory in nature. Our sensory channels receive modality specific information from the environment and our brain processes these sensory inputs in order to form a coherent percept. The merging of our different senses, known as multisensory integration, has been the subject of research for more than 60 years and has been investigated both behaviorally and neuroscientifically. Multisensory integration is highly beneficial since it has been shown that it increases the detection of external events, disambiguates their discrimination, leads to faster reaction times, and improves accuracy as opposed to unisensory processing…show more content…
One prediction is that for semantically congruent stimuli the binding will be stronger and as a result it would be more difficult to determine the temporal order (Vatakis, Ghazanfar & Spence, 2008; Vatakis & Spence, 2007, 2008). As an example, in a study by van Wassenhove, Grant, and Poeppel (2007) congruent audiovisual (AV) syllables or incongruent McGurk syllables (McGurk & MacDonald, 1976) were presented under different stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) and participants performed a simultaneity judgment (SJ) task. The estimation of the temporal window of integration revealed that the congruent pairs were more tolerant in asynchronies than the incongruent pairs (203ms vs. 159ms). In addition Vatakis and Spence (2007) in support for the unity assumption reported that it was easier to judge the temporal order of AV speech stimuli that were mismatched in gender as opposed to gender matched stimuli. Furthermore, they could not replicate these results with other naturalistic stimuli like object and music events (Vatakis & Spence, 2008) and monkey vocalizations (Vatakis et al., 2008). In order to justify these outcomes the authors argued that is the special nature of AV speech that causes the stronger binding of the senses and as a consequence the poor temporal…show more content…
Vroomen and Stekelenburg (2011)* in order to eliminate the contribution of structural factors matched sine-wave speech (SWS) replicas of pseudowords with lipread information. SWS is artificially degraded speech that, depending on instruction, is perceived as either speech or nonspeech whistles. The two groups were equally sensitive at judging AV temporal order and this was interpreted as an indication that cognitive factors do not contribute in AV speech

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