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ERIC Number: EJ879480
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Apr
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 60
ISSN: ISSN-0096-1523
Embodied Rules in Tool Use: A Tool-Switching Study
Beisert, Miriam; Massen, Cristina; Prinz, Wolfgang
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, v36 n2 p359-372 Apr 2010
In tool use, a transformation rule defines the relation between an operating movement and its distal effect. This rule is determined by the tool structure and requires no explicit definition. The present study investigates how humans represent and apply compatible and incompatible transformation rules in tool use. In Experiment 1, participants had to switch between tools for which the respective transformation rules were either the same or different. This way, rule repetitions could be dissociated from tool repetitions. In Experiment 2, the application of transformation rules in tool use was compared with the application of explicitly defined rules. In Experiment 3, actions of tool use were cued either by tool pictures or by written tool names. The results suggest that a transformation rule in tool use has a cognitive representation that is independent of the concrete tool incorporating it. Furthermore, its application differs from the application of an explicitly defined rule in terms of reduced top-down processing. (Contains 6 figures.)
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A