Avoiding Potential Pitfalls in Visual Search and Eye Movement Experiments: A Tutorial Review

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Description: Examining eye movement behavior during visual search is an increasingly popular approach for gaining insights into the moment-to-moment processing that takes place when we look for targets in our environment. In this tutorial review, we describe a set of pitfalls and considerations that are important for researchers—both experienced and new to the field—when engaging in eye movement and visual search experiments. We walk the reader through the research cycle of a visual search and eye movement experiment, from choosing the right predictions, through to data collection, reporting of methodology, analytic approaches, the different dependent variables to analyze, and drawing conclusions from patterns of results. Overall, our hope is that this review can serve as a guide, a talking point, a reflection on the practices and potential problems with the current literature on this topic, and ultimately a first step towards standardizing research practices in the field.

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