Title: Spatial perspective-taking, embodiment, and executive functions
Date, time, and venue: Thursday, Nov 6, 4:00pm, room VG02
My talk considers the cognitive processes involved when taking on the spatial-perspective of another person – an ability that might be employed when giving directions or providing a demonstration of how to do a task. Specifically, we will consider whether spatial perspective-taking relies on an embodied mechanism of imagined self-rotation. Or, alternatively, whether it is mediated by executive processes that are domain general (inhibition of own perspective responses). The results of a series of eight experiments employing a simple test of perspective-taking will be described which appear to indicate that spatial perspective-taking can be both embodied and reliant on executive functions, but that the route to perspective-taking depends upon participant strategy.
Mark Gardner was trained at University College London in the last millennium. His PhD research examined imitation in animals, while his postdoc assessed the role of attention in normal and abnormal balance system function. Mark has worked at the University of Westminster since 2000, where he is now Principal Lecturer in Psychology, and course leader for BSc Psychology. He also serves on the BPS Undergraduate Education Committee. When he is not doing admin, Mark loves doing research. As well as spatial perspective-taking, he is also investigating the effects of water consumption on cognitive performance.