Visual Attention Lab

Want to participate?

General Information

The Visual Attention Lab of Brigham & Women's Hospital in Cambridge is seeking participants for non-invasive vision studies. In our studies, participants look at a computer screen and press buttons to indicate what they see. This is similiar to a simple video game.

Our Purpose

The purpose of our study is to investigate how information is processed by the human visual system. Questions we hope to answer are 1) What kinds of visual tasks can be performed without attention and what kinds of visual tasks require focused attention? 2) What basic features of stimuli (like color or size) are immediately recognized by the visual system? 3) How are basic features combined to form complex recognizable objects?

Length of Visits

Studies usually last 1-3 hours, and we tell you how long an experiment is going to last before you begin. Participants are often welcomed back to do further experiments if they are interested. We are usually at the lab from 9am-5pm, and we schedule appointments around your schedule.


Participants are paid $11/hour in the form of a check sent to you in the mail. This check typically takes 2-4 weeks to arrive. Pay is based on an average amount of time to complete the study. If a study takes an average of 2 hours, you get paid 22 dollars, even if it only takes you 1.5 hours to finish. Likewise, if it takes you 2.5 hours, you still only get 22 dollars.



  • Must be between the ages of 18-55
  • Must have no history of eye disease, disorder, or injury. This does NOT include near or far sightedness. If you are near or far sighted, you may still participate if you have 20/25 vision or better with your glasses or contact lenses.
  • Must have no history of muscle disease or disorder, including carpel tunnel syndrome.
  • Must not have anomalous color vision (colorblindness).

Where is the Visual Attention Lab located?

We're located at 65 Landsdowne St. in Cambridge (Central Square).

IMPORTANT: If you are a returning participant, please note that our address has changed! We are in a new building, right behind the old one (previously 64 Sidney). If you're taking the T, take the red line to the Central stop between Kendall/MIT and Harvard. When you get off the T, you'll come up and be on Mass. Ave. Walk down Mass. Ave. like you're going towards MIT and the Charles River. About 3 blocks down you'll see Landsdowne St. Turn right on Landsdowne and then go a block and a half and you'll see building 65 on your right. Note that the door is facing the courtyard in the middle. Once you enter the building, you will need to check in with security at the front desk. They may ask for your name and ID. Please take the elevator to the 4th floor and our lab is straight ahead, suite 400A. Someone will be there right away to let you in. If no one shows up, you may ring the doorbell or give us a call at 617-768-8814.

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If you read the info above and you are interested in participating, you can call or email us to schedule an appointment!

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