Inferences about the psychobiological processes that underlie face perception have been drawn from the spontaneous behavior of eyes. Using a visual paired comparison task, we recorded the eye movements of twenty adults as they viewed pairs of faces that differed in their relative familiarity. The results indicate an advantage for novel viewpoints of familiar faces over familiar viewpoints of familiar faces and novel faces. We conclude that this preference serves the face recognition system by collecting the variation necessary to build robust representations of identity.
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