ERIC Number: EJ849225
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 32
Information from Multiple Modalities Helps 5-Month-Olds Learn Abstract Rules
Frank, Michael C.; Slemmer, Jonathan A.; Marcus, Gary F.; Johnson, Scott P.
Developmental Science, v12 n4 p504-509 Jul 2009
By 7 months of age, infants are able to learn rules based on the abstract relationships between stimuli ( Marcus et al., 1999 ), but they are better able to do so when exposed to speech than to some other classes of stimuli. In the current experiments we ask whether multimodal stimulus information will aid younger infants in identifying abstract rules. We habituated 5-month-olds to simple abstract patterns (ABA or ABB) instantiated in coordinated looming visual shapes and speech sounds (Experiment 1), shapes alone (Experiment 2), and speech sounds accompanied by uninformative but coordinated shapes (Experiment 3). Infants showed evidence of rule learning only in the presence of the informative multimodal cues. We hypothesize that the additional evidence present in these multimodal displays was responsible for the success of younger infants in learning rules, congruent with both a Bayesian account and with the Intersensory Redundancy Hypothesis.
Descriptors: Cues, Infants, Experiments, Learning Modalities, Stimuli, Bayesian Statistics, Sensory Integration, Sensory Training
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
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