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The Effects of Time Pressure on Temporal Overestimation Due to Threat

Tipples, Jason; Lupton, Michael; George, David


Jason Tipples


© 2021 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden. How does emotion change the way we perceive time? Studies have shown that we overestimate the duration of faces that express anger of fear-an effect that has been explained as due the speeding of a pacemaker that resides within an internal clock. Here, we test the idea that attending longer to facial threat leads to an overestimation of time. Seventy participants (16 male) estimated the duration of angry, fearful and neutral expressions under conditions designed to either reduce attention to time (by emphasising speedy responses) or lengthen attention to time (by emphasising accuracy). Results were modelled using Bayesian Multilevel Logistic Regression. The results replicate previous findings: speed emphasis reduced temporal sensitivity and led to both a higher overall proportion of long responses and faster reaction times. Facial threat attenuated the drop in temporal sensitivity due to speed instructions supporting the idea that people prolong attention to threat (even when they are not directly instructed to do so). We relate the findings to research into attention bias to threat and more broadly to models of perceptual decision making.


Tipples, J., Lupton, M., & George, D. (2021). The Effects of Time Pressure on Temporal Overestimation Due to Threat. Timing and Time Perception, 149, 1-14.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 4, 2021
Online Publication Date Feb 11, 2021
Publication Date 2021
Deposit Date Feb 12, 2021
Publicly Available Date Feb 15, 2021
Journal Timing and Time Perception
Print ISSN 2213-445X
Electronic ISSN 2213-4468
Publisher Brill Academic Publishers
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 149
Pages 1-14
Keywords Temporal distortion; Emotion; Bisection; Bayesian
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Article (199 Kb)

Copyright Statement
©2021 The authors. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the copyright holder

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