There is more than "more is up": Hand and foot responses reverse the vertical association of number magnitudes

Hartmann, Matthias; Gashaj, Venera; Stahnke, Antje; Mast, Fred W. (2014). There is more than "more is up": Hand and foot responses reverse the vertical association of number magnitudes. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 40(4), pp. 1401-1414. American Psychological Association 10.1037/a0036686

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Recent research in cognitive sciences shows a growing interest in spatial-numerical associations. The horizontal SNARC (spatial-numerical association of response codes) effect is defined by faster left-sided responses to small numbers and faster right-sided responses to large numbers in a parity judgment task. In this study we investigated whether there is also a SNARC effect for upper and lower responses. The grounded cognition approach suggests that the universal experience of "more is up" serves as a robust frame of reference for vertical number representation. In line with this view, lower hand responses to small numbers were faster than to large numbers (Experiment 1). Interestingly, the vertical SNARC effect reversed when the lower responses were given by foot instead of the hand (Experiments 2, 3, and 4). We found faster upper (hand) responses to small numbers and faster lower (foot) responses to large numbers. Additional experiments showed that spatial factors cannot account for the reversal of the vertical SNARC effect (Experiments 4 and 5). Our results question the view of "more is up" as a robust frame of reference for spatial-numerical associations. We discuss our results within a hierarchical framework of numerical cognition and point to a possible link between effectors and number representation.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Cognitive Psychology, Perception and Methodology

UniBE Contributor:

Hartmann, Matthias; Gashaj, Venera; Stahnke, Antje and Mast, Fred

Subjects:

100 Philosophy > 150 Psychology

ISSN:

0096-1523

Publisher:

American Psychological Association

Funders:

[4] Swiss National Science Foundation

Language:

English

Submitter:

Matthias Maalouli-Hartmann

Date Deposited:

05 Mar 2015 13:36

Last Modified:

20 Oct 2015 11:24

Publisher DOI:

10.1037/a0036686

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/64044

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