Earlier Development of Analytical than Holistic Object Recognition in Adolescence

Davidoff, Jules B.; Wakui, Elley; Jüttner, Martin; Petters, Dean; Kaur, Surinder and Hummel, John E.. 2013. Earlier Development of Analytical than Holistic Object Recognition in Adolescence. PLoS ONE, 8(4), e61041. ISSN 1932-6203 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

Previous research has shown that object recognition may develop well into late childhood and adolescence. The present study extends that research and reveals novel differences in holistic and analytic recognition performance in 7–12 year olds compared to that seen in adults. We interpret our data within a hybrid model of object recognition that proposes two parallel routes for recognition (analytic vs. holistic) modulated by attention.

Methodology/Principal Findings
Using a repetition-priming paradigm, we found in Experiment 1 that children showed no holistic priming, but only analytic priming. Given that holistic priming might be thought to be more ‘primitive’, we confirmed in Experiment 2 that our surprising finding was not because children’s analytic recognition was merely a result of name repetition.

Our results suggest a developmental primacy of analytic object recognition. By contrast, holistic object recognition skills appear to emerge with a much more protracted trajectory extending into late adolescence.

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Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Research Office > REF2014


5 April 2013Published

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Date Deposited:

07 Oct 2013 08:41

Last Modified:

03 Aug 2021 15:05

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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