ERIC Number: ED023483
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1966
Reference Count: 0
Novelty and Familiarity as Determinants of Infant Attention within the First Year.
Lewis, Michael; And Others
Three related experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of novel and familiar stimuli on infant attention. The procedure in each of the experiments was to place an infant before a matrix panel composed of six rows of six lights. Two patterns of lights were used to obtain the infants' fixation time: (1) a point pattern, a single blinking light in the center of the panel, and (2) a helix pattern, a single blinking light which moved across the board. In experiment one, 122 infants of approximate ages 12, 24, 36, 56, and 68 weeks received four 30-second point pattern trials and a fifth helix pattern trial. Habituation (decrease in fixation time) increased with age of the child. However, no response increment was found upon the change to the novel stimulus (the helix pattern). Experiment two used 80 infants of 3, 6, 9, and 13 months of age. Here, four helix trials were followed by one point pattern trial. The results were similar to experiment one. Experiment three repeated the procedure of experiment one in longitudinal-study form; that is, all of the infants in the experiment were tested at 3, 6, 9, and 13 months of age. The habituation data was similar to experiments one and two in that the younger children showed less habituation. (WD)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Mental Health (DHEW), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: Temple Univ., Philadelphia, PA. Fels Research Inst.