ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2013, Vol. 21 ›› Issue (11): 1913-1926.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2013.01913

• Regular Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Cognitive Mechanism of Visual Inhibition of Return

ZHANG Yang;PENG Chunhua;SUN Yang;ZHANG Ming   

  1. (1 Department of Psychology, Soochow University, Suzhou 215123, China) (2 Department of Psychology, Chongqing University of Arts and Sciences, Chongqing 402160, China) (3 Department of Psychology, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China)
  • Received:2012-12-27 Online:2013-11-15 Published:2013-11-15
  • Contact: ZHANG Ming;ZHANG Yang


Inhibition of return (IOR) refers to slower responses to targets appeared at previous attended locations than to those at control locations. Here we shall review the cognitive mechanism theories of IOR and discuss how IOR is generated and expressed. We have classified the theories into two broad categories: the first category of theories focus on how IOR affects different stages of information processing, which includes perceptual inhibition theory, motor/response inhibition theory, dual components theory and inhibitory tagging theory; The second category of theories tend to focus more on how the top-down factors, such as task set, modulate the expression of IOR, which includes integration-segregation theory and three factors theory.

Key words: inhibition of return, perceptual/response inhibition theory, dual components theory, inhibitory tagging theory, integration-segregation/three factors theory