Does interest broaden or narrow attentional scope?

Sung, Billy and Yih, Jennifer (2015) Does interest broaden or narrow attentional scope?. Cognition and Emotion, 1-10. doi:10.1080/02699931.2015.1071241

Author Sung, Billy
Yih, Jennifer
Title Does interest broaden or narrow attentional scope?
Journal name Cognition and Emotion   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1464-0600
Publication date 2015-08-07
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/02699931.2015.1071241
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Start page 1
End page 10
Total pages 10
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Abstract Theory proposes that interest is a positive emotion that may either broaden attention to facilitate processing of new information, or narrow attention to preserve engagement with new information. To our knowledge, no research has directly examined the effect of interest on attentional scope. Across four experiments, we show that traits associated with the propensity to experience interest—specifically, trait curiosity and internal boredom proneness—are associated with a narrower scope of attention. We also find that, instead of broadening, interest actually narrows attentional scope in comparison to a neutral state and awe. Challenging the conventional notion that all positive emotions broaden cognition and attention, our findings suggest that specific emotions influence attention in ways that extend beyond a general emotional valence effect.
Keyword Attention
Positive emotion
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Psychology Publications
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