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ERIC Number: EJ1151645
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Aug
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0364-0213
Fractions We Cannot Ignore: The Nonsymbolic Ratio Congruity Effect
Matthews, Percival G.; Lewis, Mark R.
Cognitive Science, v41 n6 p1656-1674 Aug 2017
Although many researchers theorize that primitive numerosity processing abilities may lay the foundation for whole number concepts, other classes of numbers, like fractions, are sometimes assumed to be inaccessible to primitive architectures. This research presents evidence that the automatic processing of nonsymbolic magnitudes affects processing of symbolic fractions. Participants completed modified Stroop tasks in which they selected the larger of two symbolic fractions while the ratios of the fonts in which the fractions were printed and the overall sizes of the compared fractions were manipulated as irrelevant dimensions. Participants were slower and less accurate when nonsymbolic dimensions of printed fractions were incongruent with the symbolic comparison decision. Results indicated a robust basic sensitivity to nonsymbolic ratios that exceeds prior conceptions about the accessibility of fraction values. Results also indicated a congruity effect for overall fraction size, contrary to findings of prior research. These findings have implications for extending theory about the nature of human number sense and mathematical cognition more generally.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Stroop Color Word Test
Grant or Contract Numbers: DRL1420211