In the visuomotor mental rotation (VMR) task, participants point to a location that deviates from a visual cue by a predetermined angle. This task elicits longer reaction times (RT) relative to tasks wherein the visual cue is spatially compatible with the movement goal. The authors previously reported that visuomotor transformations are faster and more efficient when VMR responses elicit a degree of dimensional overlap (i.e., 0° and 5°) or when the transformation involves a perceptually familiar angle (i.e., 90° or 180° K. A. Neely &M. Heath, 2010b). One caveat to this finding is that standard and VMR responses were completed in separate blocks of trials. Thus, between-task differences not only reflect the temporal demands of the visuomotor transformations, but also reflect the temporal cost of response inhibition. The goal of this study was to isolate the time cost of visuomotor transformations in the VMR task. The results demonstrated that visuomotor transformations are more efficient and effective when the response entails a degree of dimensional overlap between target and response (i.e., when the angular disparity between the responses is small) or when the transformation angle is perceptually familiar.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Cognitive Neuroscience