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Reference frame and haptic discrimination of orientations in infants

Body-tilt effect on the haptic discrimination of orientations and the 'oblique effect' (better discrimination of the vertical orientation than of an oblique orientation) were examined in 5-month-old infants. Body tilt leads to a mismatch between egocentric and gravitational reference frames and indicates in which reference frame orientations and oblique effect are defined. A familiarization/reaction to novelty procedure was used in upright body and tilted body conditions. Results revealed the occurrence of a haptic oblique effect in the upright body position, which disappeared when the body was tilted. The results suggest that spatial orientations and the oblique effect depend on a mixed reference frame that integrates not only gravitational information but also egocentric information. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved) (journal abstract)



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