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    Gravity prior in human behaviour: a perceptual or semantic phenomenon?

    Gallagher, M. and Torok, A. and Klaas, J. and Ferrè, Elisa Raffaella (2020) Gravity prior in human behaviour: a perceptual or semantic phenomenon? Experimental Brain Research 238 (9), pp. 1957-1962. ISSN 0014-4819.

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    Humans show a gravitational advantage in perception: we are more precise at judging the speed of downwards-moving than upwards-moving objects, indicating that gravitational acceleration is an internalised prior. However, it is unclear whether this gravity prior is based on purely perceptual cues or whether it can incorporate semantic knowledge. Previous research has used only objects which are known to comply with gravity, possibly confounding semantic and perceptual cues. Here we have addressed this question by asking participants to judge the speed of objects that typically move coherently with gravity (ball) or against it (rocket). Our results showed a perceptual advantage for falling stimuli, irrespective of object identity, suggesting the gravity prior is based on perceptual cues.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Graviception, Gravity prior, Perception, Visual motion
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Elisa Raffaella Ferre
    Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2021 15:48
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 18:12


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