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Gina Shroff, Jenna Nelsen, Georgia Reilly, Kelly Dickerson, Peter Gerhardstein; The effect of shared parts and spatial configuration on visual search performance in young children. Journal of Vision 2007;7(9):1069. doi: 10.1167/7.9.1069.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To investigate the processing of complex shapes in the visual system, Arguin and Saumier (2004) employed a visual search task requiring adult subjects to identify a three-dimensional abstract target object among distractors. They varied whether the distractor and target stimuli shared both internal components and spatial organization, internal components alone, spatial organization alone, or neither. It was found that with respect to reaction time, the individual effects of sharing components and sharing spatial configuration were strictly additive. The current study investigated the developmental track of this ability, comparing 2–5 year-olds to adults. A previously developed touch screen procedure for measuring visual search abilities in children (Gerhardstein & Rovee-Collier, 2000) was employed. For each of three experimental sessions, subjects were required to identify a different target item among 2, 4, or 8 distractor objects. Performance trends in adults were similar to the previous study, but results from younger subjects did not indicate an additive effect of shared spatial organization and internal components; trends were non-zero in all cases. Further research is currently underway to investigate older children's performance.
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