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Visual motion discrimination experiments reveal small differences between males and females

Lookup NU author(s): Sandra Arranz-Paraiso, Dr Ignacio Serrano-PedrazaORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


© 2023 The Author(s). Recent results have shown that males have lower duration thresholds for motion direction discrimination than females. Measuring contrast thresholds, a previous study has shown that males have a greater sensitivity to fine details and fast flickering stimuli than females, and that females have a higher sensitivity to low spatial frequencies modulated at low temporal frequencies. Here, we present the data of a contrast-detection motion discrimination experiment and a reanalysis of four different motion discrimination experiments where we compare duration thresholds for males and females using different spatial frequencies, stimulus sizes, contrasts, and temporal frequencies (in two experiments, motion surround suppression was measured). Results from the main experiment and the reanalysis show that, in general, the association between sex and contrast and duration thresholds for motion discrimination is not significant, with males and females showing similar data patterns. Only the reanalysis of one out of four studies revealed different duration thresholds between males and females paired with a strong effect size supporting previous results in the literature, although motion surround suppression was identical between groups. Importantly, most of our results do not show significant differences between males and females in contrast and duration thresholds, suggesting that the sex variable may not be as relevant as previously claimed when testing visual motion discrimination.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Bachtoula O, Arranz-Paraiso S, Luna R, Serrano-Pedraza I

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Vision Research

Year: 2023

Volume: 208

Print publication date: 01/07/2023

Online publication date: 31/03/2023

Acceptance date: 15/03/2023

Date deposited: 13/04/2023

ISSN (print): 0042-6989

ISSN (electronic): 1878-5646

Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


DOI: 10.1016/j.visres.2023.108222


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Funder referenceFunder name
Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovacion (Spain)
Juan de la Cierva-Formacion fellowship