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Gizelle Anzures, Frank Haist; Scanning Faces During Encoding and Retrieval: Age and Race Effects. Journal of Vision 2016;16(12):910. doi: 10.1167/16.12.910.
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Past studies show differences in adults' visual scanning of own-race and other-race faces (reviewed in Anzures et al., 2013). However, few studies have examined such scanning in children, and past studies have not directly compared scanning across learning and recognition test phases. Thus, we sought to examine visual scanning of own- and other-race faces across the encoding and retrieval phases of a face recognition memory task in adults and children. Caucasian participants completed a computerized face recognition task with Caucasian and Asian faces (blocked by race) while their eye scanning was recorded. Familiarization comprised of 10 sequentially presented male and female adult faces. Test immediately followed, during which target faces were shown in novel facial poses and intermixed with distractor faces. Participants made old/new judgments with button presses. Preliminary results with 19 young adults and 14 seven- to 11-year-olds reveal stimulus race and participant age effects. However, stimulus race effects did not differ across familiarization and test (p values > .10). Adults and children alike showed an overall greater proportion of looking at the eyes, nose, and mouth of own-race than other-race faces (p < .05). Participants also showed greater looking at the eyes of own-race than other-race faces, whereas they showed greater looking at the nose and mouth regions of other-race than own-race faces (p values < .01). In addition, participants showed a greater proportion of scanning transitions from the nose and mouth regions of other-race than own-race faces (p < .05). Despite comparable stimulus race effects across adults and children, participant age effects were evident. Adults showed greater overall looking at the eyes, nose, and mouth regions of faces compared to children (p < .05). Children also demonstrated fewer scanning transitions across the left and right eyes compared to adults (p < .01).
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2016
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