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A paradigm requiring subjects to switch between performing multiple different individual tasks. AST is a test of the participant’s ability to switch attention between the direction or location of an arrow on screen. This test is a sensitive measure of frontal lobe and ‘executive’ dysfunction. The test begins with an arrow in the centre of the screen which points either to the left or to the right. The participant is introduced to two buttons, one on the left and one on the right, and is asked to press a button corresponding to the direction in which the arrow is pointing.

After this initial training, the participant is then told that the arrow might appear on the left or the right side of the screen, and depending on the cue given at the top of the screen, the participant must either press the left or right button to indicate on which side of the screen the arrow is displayed, or else press the left or right button to correspond with the direction in which the arrow is pointing.


(AST), switching task

Definition contributed by Anonymous
attention switching task has been asserted to measure the following CONCEPTS
Phenotypes associated with attention switching task


No associations have been added.


No associations have been added.


No associations have been added.

IMPLEMENTATIONS of attention switching task
No implementations have been added.
EXTERNAL DATASETS for attention switching task
No implementations have been added.

Experimental conditions are the subsets of an experiment that define the relevant experimental manipulation.


You must specify conditions before you can define contrasts.

In the Cognitive Atlas, we define a contrast as any function over experimental conditions. The simplest contrast is the indicator value for a specific condition; more complex contrasts include linear or nonlinear functions of the indicator across different experimental conditions.

response time
congruency cost
switch cost

An indicator is a specific quantitative or qualitative variable that is recorded for analysis. These may include behavioral variables (such as response time, accuracy, or other measures of performance) or physiological variables (including genetics, psychophysiology, or brain imaging data).


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Owen GN, Parnell H, De Bruin EA, Rycroft JA
Nutritional neuroscience (Nutr Neurosci)
2008 Aug

Selective attention and attention switching: towards a unified developmental approach.
Hanania R, Smith LB
Developmental science (Dev Sci)
2010 Jul