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A visual conflict hypothesis for global-local visual deficits in Williams Syndrome: simulations and data

Abreu, M.A. and French, R.M. and Annaz, Dagmara and Thomas, Michael S.C. and Schonen, S. (2005) A visual conflict hypothesis for global-local visual deficits in Williams Syndrome: simulations and data. In: 27th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society, 21-23 July 2005, Stresa, Italy.

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Abstract

Individuals with Williams Syndrome demonstrate impairments in visuospatial cognition. This has been ascribed to a local processing bias. More specifically, it has been proposed that the deficit arises from a problem in disengaging attention from local features. We present preliminary data from an integrated empirical and computational exploration of this phenomenon. Using a connectionist model, we first clarify and formalize the proposal that visuospatial deficits arise from an inability to locally disengage. We then introduce two empirical studies using Navon-style stimuli. The first explored sensitivity to local vs. global features in a perception task, evaluating the effect of a manipulation that raised the salience of global organization. Thirteen children with WS exhibited the same sensitivity to this manipulation as CA-matched controls, suggesting no local bias in perception. The second study focused on image reproduction and demonstrated that in contrast to controls, the children with WS were distracted in their drawings by having the target in front of them rather than drawing from memory. We discuss the results in terms of an inability to disengage during the planning stage of reproduction due to over-focusing on local elements of the current visual stimulus.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Additional Information: Published in: Bara. B.G., Barsalou, L. and Bucciarelli, M., eds. 2005. The Proceedings of the 27th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum. ISBN: 9780976831813
School or Research Centre: Birkbeck Schools and Research Centres > School of Science > Psychological Sciences
Depositing User: Sarah Hall
Date Deposited: 02 Mar 2012 08:24
Last Modified: 21 Jan 2014 11:49
URI: http://eprints.bbk.ac.uk/id/eprint/4612

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