Spotlight theory Essay

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In the field of attention research, the spotlight theory is a prominent theory that attempts to explain the shift of visual attention. The basic thesis is that attention is similar to a movable spotlight that is intended towards its target, focusing on each target in a serial manner.

When information is shining in the spotlight, thus attended, the processing of that particular information happens in a more efficient manner. When there is a shift of attention to another, the spotlight is turned off on that particular object, the spotlight is then turned to another, attending a different location.This kind of theory seems to focus on one particular object in processing information. It seems to engage its object one at a time to process that particular data before moving on to another. As such, this kind of teaching technique can be applied for teaching small children to the graduate studies as it gives time for the audience to digest the information. For instance, let us apply this theory in a classroom consisting of twenty 6 year olds.

The particular example I can give on this is recitation. Say one pupil is intructed to recite the first 13 letters of the English alphabet.He or she is then asked to call one of his classmates to continue the alphabet. As children’s attention is very easy to distract, it requires for the teacher to do something extra to gain their cooperation in the form of incentives.

A prize for the best pupil to recite is usually the incentive given. The spotlight in essence, is on the pupil reciting. As that pupil is required to call on his seatmates to continue the recitation, the other pupils will have to listen attentively to the first child who recited.After the first pupil recited, and the next pupil is called to recite N-Z, the spotlight is turned off on the first student and shifted to the second student. Everyone is going to look as he might be called next Another example of this theory is in the case of using colourful visuals.

After one visual is shown to the class and after exhausting all the information from that particular visual, the teacher will then put it away so the spotlight is now turned on for another visual. One at a time, the pupils digest information.

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