An empirical taxonomy of visual illusions

Stanley Coren, Joan Girgus, Howard Erlichman, A. Ralph Hakstian

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A classification system for visual-geometric illusions, based upon the interrelationships between behavioral responses to various distortions was created. Forty-five illusion configurations were presented to 221 observers. Factor analysis revealed that there are five classes of illusions. A secondorder analysis revealed that visual distortions are ultimately reducible to two global types of distortions: illlusions of extent and illusions of shape or direction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)129-137
Number of pages9
JournalPerception & Psychophysics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 1976

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Psychology(all)

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    Coren, S., Girgus, J., Erlichman, H., & Hakstian, A. R. (1976). An empirical taxonomy of visual illusions. Perception & Psychophysics, 20(2), 129-137.