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Hideyuki Unuma, Hisa Hasegawa, Philip Kellman; Perceptual Learning in Jigsaw Puzzle. Journal of Vision 2012;12(9):688. doi: 10.1167/12.9.688.
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Perceptual systems pick up information about the structure of patterns in problem solving and learning situations (Gibson, 1969; Kellman, 2002). Humans show experience-induced changes -- perceptual learning -- in picking-up information in complex tasks such as chess. Recent work suggests that such expertise can be accelerated by perceptual learning modules (PLMs) based on many short speeded classification trials (e.g., Kellman, Massey & Son, 2010). We tested two kinds of PLM interventions for a jigsaw puzzle task. In a pre-test and post-test, participants were required to make a 4 AFC to judge which puzzle piece could be connected to the target piece of jigsaw puzzle with 5 fine-art scenes. The two PLM interventions, given between pre-test and post-test, each consisted of 400 trials of 2AFC judgment with geometrical patterns, requiring either (a) connection judgments similar to those in the pre- and post-test, or (b) same-different judgments in which participants chose the same piece as the target. Both PLM interventions produced significant improvements between pre-test and post-test in accuracy (correct response rate) and in fluency (reaction time). Especially large effects of the interventions were found for the fluency measure. These results suggest that (a) perceptual learning facilitates pick up of complex relations between target and test pieces, b) that these improved abilities transferred to novel situations, and that (c) fluency in pick up of complex relations can be markedly improved in only a few hundred trials.
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2012
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