Associate Professor

Mieke Donk

Associate Professor

Phone: +31 (0) 20 598 8797
Room: 1B-88

Personal webpage

Research interests

My general research focus has always been on visual perception, attention, and eye movements. I have been working on multiple projects about visual search, visual marking, and attentional and oculomotor selection in simple displays and natural scenes. Throughout the past years I have been supervising and guiding multiple master theses and several doctoral theses (Wieske van Zoest, Isabel Dombrowe, Alisha Siebold, Jeroen Silvis, Nicola Anderson).


Eye movements in natural scenes (in collaboration with Nicki Anderson and Martijn Meeter)

When inspecting a visual scene people typically make multiple eye movements. The manner in which these eye movements are controlled changes when people gather more information from the scene. That is, eye movements are guided by a representation that changes when the scene inspection time increases. The aim of the present project is to investigate how this representation changes in time. How is eye movement control modulated over a sequence of eye movements, what does this tell us about the scene representation being built up, and what is the role of memory in selective control?

Assessing, understanding, and modeling visual salience and its dynamical impact on perception and selection (in collaboration with Jeroen Silvis, Zhaoping Li, Ingrid Scharlau)

The project aims to investigate how visual salience dynamically affects attentional and oculomotor selection and how these effects are related to the functional properties of the primary visual cortex (V1) and higher-order visual cortical areas. As a focus so far disregarded in psychological research and modeling, we will concentrate on temporal dynamics. We will experimentally probe salience effects within single fixations as well as those occurring over longer periods of time extending over multiple eye movements, to find out when salience derived from different visual feature dimensions affects visual selection and when not. We will develop a neurophysiologically plausible computational model in-corporating the dynamics of salience effects. The model will be based on a salience model of V1 (Li, 2002) and extended to account for differential salience effects as a function of feature dimension (Koene & Zhaoping, 2007) and, importantly, time (Donk & Soesman, 2010; Donk & van Zoest, 2008).


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Recent publications

E van Heusden, M Donk & CNL Olivers (2021) An attentional limbo: Between saliency-driven and goal-driven selection, saccades become momentarily non-selective.. Journal of Vision 21 (9), 1858-1858
K Arkesteijn, M Donk, AV Belopolsky & JBJ Smeets (2021) A nearby distractor does not influence hand movements. Cortex 142, 204-212
E van Heusden, M Donk & CNL Olivers (2021) The dynamics of saliency-driven and goal-driven visual selection as a function of eccentricity. Journal of Vision 21 (3), 2-21
C Huang, A Vilotijević, J Theeuwes & M Donk (2021) Proactive distractor suppression elicited by statistical regularities in visual search. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 1-104
C Huang, J Theeuwes & M Donk (2020) Statistical learning affects the time courses of salience-driven and goal-driven selection.. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance3
K Arkesteijn, M Donk, JBJ Smeets & AV Belopolsky (2020) Visual information is required to reduce the global effect. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics, 1-85
CMW Gaasterland, MC Jansen–van der Weide, MJ du Prie–Olthof & ... (2019) The patient’s view on rare disease trial design–a qualitative study. Orphanet journal of rare diseases 14 (1), 1-922
M Van de Weijgert, E Van der Burg & M Donk (2019) Attentional guidance varies with display density. Vision research 164, 1-112
K Arkesteijn, AV Belopolsky, JBJ Smeets & M Donk (2019) The limits of predictive remapping of attention across eye movements. Frontiers in psychology 10, 114610
E van Heusden, M Donk & C Olivers (2019) Salience-driven and goal-driven effects on visual selection as a function of eccentricity. NVP Wintercongres
K Arkesteijn, JBJ Smeets, M Donk & AV Belopolsky (2018) Target-distractor competition cannot be resolved across a saccade. Scientific reports 8 (1), 1-108
K Arkesteijn, J Smeets, M Donk & A Belopolsky (2018) Preserving the global effect across a saccade. Journal of Vision 18 (10), 374-374
W van Zoest, S Van der Stigchel & M Donk (2017) Conditional control in visual selection. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics 79 (6), 1555-15729
NC Anderson & M Donk (2017) Salient object changes influence overt attentional prioritization and object-based targeting in natural scenes. PLoS One 12 (2), e01721329
M Donk (2017) Subset selective search on the basis of color and preview. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics 79 (1), 85-994
NC Anderson, M Donk & M Meeter (2016) The influence of a scene preview on eye movement behavior in natural scenes. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 23 (6), 1794-180116
M Donk, J Silvis & J Theeuwes (2016) Prior knowledge of the locations of potentially relevant objects reduces effects of visual salience. Journal of Vision 16 (12), 377-377
N Anderson & M Donk (2016) Changes in object salience influences overt attentional prioritization in natural scenes.. Journal of Vision 16 (12), 690-690
S Mathôt, N Anderson & M Donk (2016) Using the pupillary light response to track visual attention during pro-and antisaccades. Perception 45 (2), 354-355
JD Silvis, AV Belopolsky, JWI Murris & M Donk (2015) The effects of feature-based priming and visual working memory on oculomotor capture. PloS one 10 (11), e01426967

View full list of publications on Google Scholar