Guidance towards Best Practice in Psychophysical Procedures Used when Measuring Relative Spatial Brightness

CIE 212:2014
Division 1

This report reviews evidence for the procedures and other factors of experiments carried out to investigate relative spatial brightness, making recommendations of those aspects that ought to be considered as essential, or at least desirable, for best practice. These factors include the size and complexity of the visual field employed in trials, evaluation mode (separate, simultaneous, sequential or successive) and experimental biases associated with selection of stimulus range and response mode. Some of the issues raised will be considered, by some, to be obvious and already standard practice: unfortunately such awareness is not widespread. This report hence serves as a guide for those planning experiments to investigate spatial brightness. The proposals are presented as recommendations and not as compulsory. The report identifies those issues for which further research is desirable.
The publication is written in English, with a short summary in French and German. It consists of 65 pages with 13 figures and 12 tables and is readily available at the National Committees of the CIE or via the CIE Webshop.

The following members of TC 1-80 "Research Methods for Psychophysical Studies of Brightness Judgements” took part in the preparation of this Technical Report. The committee comes under Division 1 "Vision and Colour”.


  • Fotios, S. United Kingdom  (chair)
  • Chan, A. Hong Kong
  • Engelke, U. Netherlands
  • Hanselaer, P. Belgium
  • Houser, K. USA
  • Logadóttir, Á Denmark / Iceland
  • Nagy, B.  Brazil / Hungary
  • Niall, K. Canada
  • da Pos, O. Italy
  • Simmons, D. United Kingdom
  • Tassinary, L. USA
  • Vanrie, J. Belgium
  • Wei, M. USA
  • Withouck, M. Belgium

The committee would like to acknowledge the support of Dr. Christophe Blaison, Humboldt-Universität Berlin, Germany, in translating the summary of this Technical Report to French.