Heading to the right: The effect of aperture width on navigation asymmetries for miniature remote-controlled vehicles

Michael Nicholls, Craig Jones, Joanne Robertson

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    5 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Our ability to attend to the environment is asymmetrical and affects activities like navigation. This study investigated whether rightward deviations exist for miniaturized vehicles. Experiment 1 asked participants (n = 26) to navigate a remote-controlled car through apertures that were 200, 300 or 400 mm wide. Analyses revealed a nonsignificant trend for the rightward deviation to increase with aperture width. None of the deviations was significantly to the right. Experiment 2 (n = 16) elevated the car to eye level to control for upper/lower visual-field effects. The results were unchanged. Experiment 3 (n = 16) altered the car's mechanical drive to control veering effects, and the results were unchanged. Data from Experiments 1-3 were combined to increase statistical power and showed that the rightward deviation increased for wider apertures. Experiment 4 (n = 17) investigated deviations for wider apertures (1,100 mm) and found a rightward deviation. Finally, Experiment 5 (n = 24) used a different type of remote-controlled vehicle. A rightward deviation, which increased with width, was observed. In addition, the degree of rightward deviation was related to the perceived middle of the aperture. It appears that systematic rightward deviations occur for miniaturized vehicles, which increase with aperture width. The implications of these results for attentional explanations of rightward deviation are discussed.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)225-237
    Number of pages14
    JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: Applied
    Volume22
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2016

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