The different impact of attention, movement, and sensory information on body metric representation

Caggiano, Pietro; Cocchini, Gianna; De Stefano, Danila and Romano, Daniele. 2024. The different impact of attention, movement, and sensory information on body metric representation. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 77(5), pp. 1044-1051. ISSN 1747-0218 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

A growing body of research investigating the relationship between body representation and tool-use has shown that body representation is highly malleable. The nature of the body representation does not consist only of sensory attributes but also of motor action-oriented qualities, which may modulate the subjective experience of our own body. However, how these multisensory factors and integrations may specifically guide and constrain body reorientation’s plasticity has been under-investigated. In the present study, we used a forearm bisection task to selectively investigate the contribution of motor, sensory and attentional aspects in guiding body representation malleability. Results show that the perceived forearm midpoint deviates from the real one. This shift is further modulated by a motor task but not by a sensory task, whereas the attentional task generates more uncertain results. Our findings provide novel insight into the individual role of movement, somatosensation and attention in modulating body metric representation.

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Data Access Statement:

Readers seeking access to the datasets generated and/or analysed during the current study should contact the corresponding author. Access will be granted to named individuals. There are no further conditions. No part of the study procedures and analyses were pre-registered prior to the research being conducted.


body representation, body schema, body image, body metric, arm bisection task

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Psychology > Centre for Cognition, Computation and Culture (CCCC)


26 June 2023Accepted
29 June 2023Published Online
May 2024Published

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Date Deposited:

29 Jun 2023 08:40

Last Modified:

27 Apr 2024 00:09

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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