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Cognition. 2009 Feb;110(2):198-207. doi: 10.1016/j.cognition.2008.11.003. Epub 2008 Dec 17.

Spontaneous mapping of number and space in adults and young children.

Author information

1
Laboratory for Developmental Studies, William James Hall, 11th floor, Harvard University, 33 Kirkland Street, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA. dehevia@wjh.harvard.edu

Abstract

Mature representations of space and number are connected to one another in ways suggestive of a 'mental number line', but this mapping could either be a cultural construction or a reflection of a more fundamental link between the domains of number and geometry. Using a manual bisection paradigm, we tested for number line representations in adults, young school children, and preschool children. Non-symbolic numerical displays systematically distorted localization of the midpoint of a horizontal line at all three ages. Numerical and spatial representations therefore are linked prior to the onset of formal instruction, in a manner that suggests a privileged relation between spatial and numerical cognition.

PMID:
19095223
PMCID:
PMC2705970
DOI:
10.1016/j.cognition.2008.11.003
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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