The Plasticity of Temporal Perception: Perceptual Training Enhances Multisensory Temporal Acuity
De Niear, Matthew Allen
The perceptual binding of sensory signals from different sensory modalities is essential for the development of a coherent perception of the world. The behavioral benefits of multisensory interactions are readily evident as the interaction of auditory and visual cues enhances the comprehension of speech. An essential property for determining if these sensory signals will be perceptually bound is the temporal relationship between sensory signals. The perceptual binding of sensory signals occurs over a range of time when the signals may be proximate but asynchronous. This epoch of time during which multisensory interactions are likely to occur has been termed the temporal binding window (TBW). Recently, several studies have reported that the TBW for typically developed adults is capable of being altered by perceptual training. The following studies were conducted to determine the manner and contingencies with which multisensory perceptual learning occurs, the capacity for multisensory perceptual learning to enhance temporal acuity for audiovisual speech, and the neural correlates of perceptual learning to enhance temporal acuity for audiovisual speech. These studies have collectively enhanced our understanding of perceptual learning.