September 2017
Volume 17, Issue 10
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2017
The Effect of Home-Schooling on Face Processing Ability
Author Affiliations
  • Lindsey Short
    Department of Psychology, Redeemer University College
  • Benjamin Balas
    Department of Psychology, North Dakota State University
  • Cassandra Wilson
    Department of Psychology, Redeemer University College
  • Matthew Linzel
    Department of Psychology, Redeemer University College
Journal of Vision August 2017, Vol.17, 617. doi:
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      Lindsey Short, Benjamin Balas, Cassandra Wilson, Matthew Linzel; The Effect of Home-Schooling on Face Processing Ability. Journal of Vision 2017;17(10):617.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Recent research (e.g., Balas & Saville, 2015) has demonstrated that individuals from small communities show impoverished face recognition relative to those from large communities, suggesting that the number of faces to which one is exposed may have a measurable effect on face processing abilities. In the present study, we sought to extend these findings by examining a second factor that influences the population of faces to which one is exposed during childhood: educational setting. In particular, we examined whether participants who were homeschooled (n = 22) show reduced performance relative to non-homeschoolers (n = 26) on two measures used to characterize face recognition ability: the Cambridge Face Memory Test (Duchaine & Nakayama, 2006) and an identity sorting task (Jenkins et al., 2011) in which participants sort 40 photographs of two unfamiliar identities (20 photographs/model) into the number of identities they believe are present. On the CFMT, there was no effect of educational setting, p = .82; however, on the sorting task, participants who were homeschooled showed significant deficits. Relative to non-homeschoolers, participants who were homeschooled perceived more identities, p = .03, and showed reduced discriminability, p = .007, when forming identity-specific piles in the sorting task. Such results suggest that reduced exposure to faces early in life as a function of homeschooling may have lasting effects on the face processing system, particularly with regard to perceptions of within-person variability.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2017


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