Time Course of Executive Processes: Data from the Event-Related Optical Signal

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter discusses a series of experiments in which a pre-cue signals which of several dimensions of an upcoming stimulus is relevant on a particular trial. The event-related optical signal is used to follow the time course of activity in different cortical areas after the pre-cue. The data show two types of preparatory brain activities: (1) a domain-general set, involving first the left middle frontal gyrus and then the lateral parietal cortex; and (2) a domain-specific set, involving secondary sensory and motor areas of the brain. These data suggest that task preparation involves the operation of a hierarchical, top-down system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationNeuroscience of Rule-Guided Behavior
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780199786695
ISBN (Print)9780195314274
StatePublished - Sep 1 2007


  • Domain-general
  • Domain-specific
  • Event-related optical signal
  • Hierarchical
  • Middle frontal gyrus
  • Parietal cortex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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