In connection with systematic studies of the underlying variables which affect the learning and retention of complex skills, it has been found that certain patterns of response-the steering and pointing patterns, in particular--are firmly ingrained in the average person before adulthood is reached. They are so rigidly fixed that alterations of them are extremely difficult to produce in reasonable lengths of time, under laboratory conditions. They depend on a high degree of coordination of perceptual and motor components of behavior, and are presumably acquired during many years of reinforced practice. Steering left when turning right is desired is seemingly as behaviorally abhorrent as pointing up when pointing down is the thing to do. The purpose of the present investigation, made last summer at the State Fair in Des Moines, was to determine whether age and handedness are factors in the performance of a task requiring responses basically like the ordinary ones of steering and pointing. It was hoped that the results would reveal something about the way the steering and pointing habits grow, indicate the approximate age at which they become fully developed, and disclose any interactions between the effects of age and handedness.
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science
©1956 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
Miles, Guy H. and Lewis, Don
"Age and Handedness as Factors in the Performance of a Complex Pursuit Task: Results of a Study at the Iowa State Fair,"
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science, 63(1), 568-575.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uni.edu/pias/vol63/iss1/60