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Brain Cogn. 2000 Jun-Aug;43(1-3):60-4.

A developmental analysis of the relationship between hand preference and performance: II. A performance-based method of measuring hand preference in children.

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Department of Psychology, University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada.


The present study describes a performance-based method of measuring hand preference in children. Three aspects of handedness were considered to be important in developing the paradigm (a) overall hand preference across a number of tasks, (b) consistency of hand use and, (c) the use of the preferred hand in a bimanual task. The new paradigm, termed the WatHand Box Test (WBT), requires participants to perform a variety of unimanual tasks such as, using a hammer, tossing a ball, and opening a lock with a key. To determine the validity of the WBT and examine the developmental trends in hand preference, eighty right-handed children and adults (ages 3-4, 6-7, 9-10, and 18-24 years) performed the WBT. First, the WBT was found to correlate significantly with scores on a standard hand preference questionnaire for the adults. As well, significant developmental trends were noted in hand preference as measured by the WBT. Most specifically, three- and four-year-olds had significantly lower scores on the WBT indicating a less stable pattern of hand preference than in the other three age groups.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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