|WebExp Demo Paradigm: Mental Rotation|
DescriptionThe experiment presents transformations of an image, either a recognisable symbol such as a letter, or a more abstract object (often three-dimensional). The task is to identify whether the object has merely been rotated, or if the transformation also involves reflection.
The results of the experiment show a linear correlation between the amount of rotation and the time taken to decide if the rotated image is identical to the original. This may be interpreted as indicating that a mental model of the object is constructed by the user, and rotated in the mind - and thus that thought involves visual/spatial manipulation processes, contrary to the Behaviourist idea that thought processes depend upon language.
The ExperimentAn implementation of the Mental Rotation experiment using the rotated alphabetic characters employed by Cooper & Shepard (1973). There are 12 stimuli comprising an image of the letter R, its mirror image, and each image rotated through 60 degree increments.
There are 2 sections to the experiment - the first shows transformations of the letter R, and the second transformations of an abstract symbol. The 12 images in each section are shown in a randomised order.
|WebExp Demonstrations 2008 The University of Edinburgh|