Examining the relation between visual imagery and spatial ability tests

Burton, Lorelle J. (2003) Examining the relation between visual imagery and spatial ability tests. International Journal of Testing, 3 (3). pp. 277-291. ISSN 1532-7574

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Abstract

Research evidence indicates that self-report imagery ability is psychometrically distinct from objective, spatial test measures. One hypothesis put forward in the literature to explain this finding is that the nature of the stimulus is important. The aim of this paper was to examine the relationship between spatial abilities and measures of visual imagery obtained using different types of stimulus material. The main finding was that imagery tasks that required the mental synthesis and/or transformation of visual forms such as alphanumeric characters and simple geometric shapes correlated strongly with tests of spatial ability. In contrast, images of familiar items retrieved from long-term memory did not correlate with spatial test performance. It is argued that tasks that better control the stimuli imagined and the standards used to rate the quality of the image provide more objective measures of imagery ability. The implications of these findings are discussed.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Author's post-print. This is an electronic version of an article published in International Journal of Testing, 3 (3). pp. 277-291.
Depositing User: Dr Lorelle Burton
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Psychology
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2007 01:22
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 22:50
Uncontrolled Keywords: visual imagery, spatial ability
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170112 Sensory Processes, Perception and Performance
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170199 Psychology not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: doi: 10.1207/S15327574IJT0303_6
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/3209

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