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Filling the Gap on Developmental Change: Tests of a Dynamic Field Theory of Spatial Cognition

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Abstract

In early childhood, there is a developmental transition in spatial memory biases. Before the transition, children's memory responses are biased toward the midline of a space, while after the transition responses are biased away from midline. The Dynamic Field Theory (DFT) posits that changes in neural interaction and changes in how children perceive frames of reference underlie the transition. Here, we tested a prediction of the DFT that children younger than the transitional age would show the more advanced developmental pattern when tested with a perceptually salient midline axis. Four age groups (3 years, 6 months; 3 years, 8 months; 4 years; and 5 years) were tested at targets near midline. As predicted, children's responses were biased away from midline.

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)328-355
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Cognition and Development
Volume11
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2010
Peer-reviewedYes

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