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Supplementary data for the paper 'Is accommodation a confounder in pupillometry research?'

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posted on 12.02.2021, 22:34 by L. (Lars) Kooijman, Dimitra DodouDimitra Dodou, Stefan Jansen, Tamir Themans, Julia Russell, S.M. (Sebastiaan) Petermeijer, Just Doorman, Joelle Hablé, Dominik Neubert, Margot Vos, Joost de WinterJoost de Winter
Much psychological research uses pupil diameter measurements for investigating the cognitive and emotional effects of visual stimuli. A potential problem is that accommodating at a nearby point constricts the pupil. This study examined to what extent accommodation is a confounder in pupillometry research. Participants solved multiplication problems at different distances (Experiment 1) and looked at line drawings with different monocular depth cues (Experiment 2) while their pupil diameter, refraction, and vergence angle were recorded using a photorefractor. Experiment 1 showed that the pupils dilated while performing the multiplications, for all presentation distances. Pupillary constriction due to accommodation was not strong enough to override pupil dilation due to cognitive load. Experiment 2 showed that monocular depth cues caused a small shift in refraction in the expected direction. We conclude that, for the young student sample we used, pupil diameter measurements are not substantially affected by accommodation.


A replication study of ‘pupil size as related to interest value of visual stimuli’ (Hess & Polt, 1960)

Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research

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Delft University of Technology, Faculty of Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering