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Nobu Shirai, Tomoko Imura; Emergence of implied motion perception in human infants. Journal of Vision 2016;16(12):62. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/16.12.62.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
A previous study reported that infants aged 5-8 months significantly shifted their gaze toward the direction of a person's dynamic actions such as running depicted in a still image (Shirai & Imura, 2014, Experimental Brain Research). This suggests that even young infants have the ability to perceive dynamic events depicted in still images (implied motion perception, cf. Kourtzi, 2004, Trends in Cognitive Sciences). In the present study, we tested whether younger (4- and 5-month-old) infants show the similar gaze behavior to a dynamic action depicted in a still image. Sixteen 4-month-old infants and 16 5-month-old infants participated in the experiment. At the beginning of each experimental trial, a still image of an adult male model running toward either the left or right side was presented shortly (duration = 600ms) on the center of a CRT monitor (the running-cue condition). Two identical black discs subsequently appeared on the right and left side of the CRT monitor simultaneously. Each infant took part in 20 trials. Infants' visual preference for a black disc, which consistently appeared on the same side as the running direction of the still image, was measured (forced-choice preferential looking method: Teller, 1979). Results showed that the 5- but not 4-month-old infants showed significant visual preference for the cued disc. Additionally, when the still image was replaced with a picture of the same model standing and facing either left or right side (the standing-cue condition), both the younger and older infants showed no significant visual preference for the cued disc. These results indicated that implied motion perception emerges between 4 and 5 months of ages in human infants.
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2016
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