Perceptual representations of physical properties: Grasp preparation and the relation between object size and weight on change detection

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Southern New Hampshire University
The proposed study will examine the relationships among object weight and size, grasp preparation, handedness, and the detection of change in the perception of visually displayed objects. In a 4 X 2 factorial design, approximately eighty subjects will be randomized into one of four conditions. Subjects will be instructed to grasp one of four differently sized and weighted balls: a large, heavy ball; a large, light ball; a small, heavy ball; and a small, light ball. All subjects will be grasping a ball while participating in a change-detection task, in which subjects will watch a computer screen while two slightly differently images flicker back and forth. Once they have detected the object that has changed, they will press a key and select the object, which the subjects perceived to have changed. They will complete 12 of these trials. The grasping conditions are the independent variables, and the change-detection task is the dependent variable. We hypothesize that change detection will improve for conditions in which the grasped object's weight—as well as its size—is congruent with the changed-object will perform significantly better at change-detection than when object weight is incongruent. (Author abstract)