Infants in control: Rapid anticipation of action outcomes in a gaze-contingent paradigm

Infants' poor motor abilities limit their interaction with their environment and render studying infant cognition notoriously difficult. Exceptions are eye movements, which reach high accuracy early, but generally do not
Infants' poor motor abilities limit their interaction with their environment and render studying infant cognition notoriously difficult. Exceptions are eye movements, which reach high accuracy early, but generally do not allow manipulation of the physical environment. In this study, real-time eye tracking is used to put 6- and 8-month-old infants in direct control of their visual surroundings to study the fundamental problem of discovery of agency, i.e. the ability to infer that certain sensory events are caused by one's own actions. We demonstrate that infants quickly learn to perform eye movements to trigger the appearance of new stimuli and that they anticipate the consequences of their actions in as few as 3 trials. Our findings show that infants can rapidly discover new ways of controlling their environment. We suggest that gaze-contingent paradigms offer effective new ways for studying many aspects of infant learning and cognition in an interactive fashion and provide new opportunities for behavioral training and treatment in infants.
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Metadaten
Author:Quan Wang, Jantina Elizabeth Bolhuis, Constantin A. Rothkopf, Thorsten Kolling, Monika Knopf, Jochen Triesch
URN:urn:nbn:de:hebis:30:3-245795
DOI:http://dx.doi.org/doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0030884
ISSN:1932-6203
Pubmed Id:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=22363507
Parent Title (English):PLoS one
Publisher:PLoS
Place of publication:Lawrence, Kan.
Document Type:Article
Language:English
Date of Publication (online):2012/04/02
Date of first Publication:2012/02/07
Publishing Institution:Univ.-Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main
Release Date:2012/04/02
Volume:7
Issue:2: e30884
Pagenumber:6
HeBIS PPN:306542072
Institutes:Psychologie
Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies (FIAS)
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychologie
Sammlungen:Universitätspublikationen
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung 3.0

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