Crossmodal selective attention and inhibition in task-switching, funded by the DFG

  • Funding agency: German Research Foundation, DFG
  • Applicant: Prof. Dr. Iring Koch
  • Co-applicants: Prof. Dr. Klaus Willmes, Prof. Dr. Walter Sturm, Neurologic Clinic of the Uniklinik RWTH Aachen University
  • Responsible staff member: M.Sc. Magali Kreutzfeldt
  • Duration: 48 months, 2013-2017


Cognitive control is a crucial factor for the flexibility of selective attention and action control. These aspects are commonly investigated using the task-switching paradigm. Hereby, a performance decrement can be usually found when comparing performance in task switches to task repetitions. Competing accounts of the source of these switch costs assume either a central, amodal process of task reconfiguration or interference of the prior relevant task through inertia of the cognitive system, possibly also modality-specific interference. Previous research has rarely studied to what extent cognitive control incorporates modality-specific components. We will therefore systematically investigate modality-specific influences of cognitive control during task switching. To this end, we will study crossmodal selective attention in the task-switching paradigm.

Selected references

Kreutzfeldt, M., Stephan, D. N., Sturm, W., Willmes, K., & Koch, I. (2015). The role of crossmodal competition and dimensional overlap in crossmodal attention switching. Acta Psychologica, 155, 67-76.

Lukas, S., Philipp, A. M., & Koch, I. (2014). Crossmodal attention switching: Auditory dominance in temporal discrimination tasks. Acta Psychologica, 153, 139-146.

Lukas, S., Philipp, A. M., & Koch, I.(2010). Switching attention between modalities—Further evidence for visual dominance. Psychological Research, 74, 255-267.

Lukas, S., Philipp, A. M., & Koch, I.(2010). The role of preparation and cue-modality in crossmodal task switching. Acta Psychologica, 134, 318-322.