Project Title

Serial Spatial Memory Performance and Physical Activity in Children 5-11 Years Old.

Authors' Affiliations

Loni Parrish, Department of Psychology, College of Arts and Sciences, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN Alyson Chroust, Department of Psychology, College of Arts and Sciences, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN Brandi Eveland-Sayers, Department Sport, Exercise, Recreation, and Kinesiology, College of Education, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN Kara Boynewicz, Department of Physical Therapy, College of Clinical and Rehabilitation Health Sciences, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN Andrew Dotterweich, Department Sport, Exercise, Recreation, and Kinesiology, College of Education, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN

Location

Clinch Mtn

Start Date

4-12-2019 9:00 AM

End Date

4-12-2019 2:30 PM

Poster Number

159

Faculty Sponsor’s Department

Psychology

Name of Project's Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Alyson Chroust

Type

Poster: Competitive

Classification of First Author

Graduate Student-Master’s

Project's Category

Arts and Humanities and Social Sciences, Psychology

Abstract Text

Visuospatial memory supports cognitive functioning and guides one’s navigation through the environment. Spatial processing allows individuals to remember procedural sequence of steps to achieve a certain goal. It plays a vital role in learning, reasoning, problem solving and language comprehension. Additionally, aerobic fitness enhances cognitive functions such that children that have higher levels of aerobic fitness and motor skills also have better attention, spatial memory, and school achievement. The current study measured spatial memory in children (2nd – 5th grade) to assess developmental differences. Moreover, the study investigated whether spatial memory and running speed were related. It was hypothesized that the data will reconstruct the classic serial position effect and there will be developmental differences in spatial memory performance. Furthermore, participants’ running speed will be negatively associated with their performance on the spatial memory task. That is, the faster their running time, the higher their spatial memory score. Two tasks were presented to children as part of a larger project. The first was a visual-spatial memory task that was presented on a computer using an eye-tracker. The second was a 100-ft shuttle run. Fifty-one children (M age = 104 months, SD = 25.05; 27 female) were introduced to the spatial memory task with a story about a dog walker who lost a puppy. The task had three periods: presentation, retention, and recall. During the presentation period, participants saw the puppy appear in five spatial positions. Next, participants had the opportunity to see all of the positions the puppy visited as teal boxes reappeared in the same locations and remained on the screen for ten seconds. Lastly, during the recall period, participants were asked to recall the order that the puppy visited the five positions. The percentage of correctly recalled items was the dependent measure. A mixed analysis of variance was conducted on percent correct with item position (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th) as a within-subject factor and participant grade (2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th) as a between-participant factor. There were main effects of sequential position, F(4, 188) = 10.46, p< .001, h2 = .18 and grade, F(1, 47) = 5.32, p= .003, h2 = .25. The extent of serial position effect was comparable across grade levels, with no sign of floor or ceiling effect in any group. Overall, older participants had a higher percentage correct recall than younger participants. Additionally, across grade-levels, first-item primacy and last-item recency effects were apparent. Furthermore, there was a significant association between running speed and spatial memory performance, r= -0.396, p= .004. In summary, the results of the current study suggest that the serial position effect is present by 5-years of age and that children’s memory for spatial locations improves with age. Moreover, children with higher percentages of recalled items on the spatial memory task had faster times on the shuttle run. Future research should consider other measurements of physical activity (e.g., strength, agility, coordination) to see whether physical activity, more broadly, relates to spatial memory performance in children.

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Apr 12th, 9:00 AM Apr 12th, 2:30 PM

Serial Spatial Memory Performance and Physical Activity in Children 5-11 Years Old.

Clinch Mtn

Visuospatial memory supports cognitive functioning and guides one’s navigation through the environment. Spatial processing allows individuals to remember procedural sequence of steps to achieve a certain goal. It plays a vital role in learning, reasoning, problem solving and language comprehension. Additionally, aerobic fitness enhances cognitive functions such that children that have higher levels of aerobic fitness and motor skills also have better attention, spatial memory, and school achievement. The current study measured spatial memory in children (2nd – 5th grade) to assess developmental differences. Moreover, the study investigated whether spatial memory and running speed were related. It was hypothesized that the data will reconstruct the classic serial position effect and there will be developmental differences in spatial memory performance. Furthermore, participants’ running speed will be negatively associated with their performance on the spatial memory task. That is, the faster their running time, the higher their spatial memory score. Two tasks were presented to children as part of a larger project. The first was a visual-spatial memory task that was presented on a computer using an eye-tracker. The second was a 100-ft shuttle run. Fifty-one children (M age = 104 months, SD = 25.05; 27 female) were introduced to the spatial memory task with a story about a dog walker who lost a puppy. The task had three periods: presentation, retention, and recall. During the presentation period, participants saw the puppy appear in five spatial positions. Next, participants had the opportunity to see all of the positions the puppy visited as teal boxes reappeared in the same locations and remained on the screen for ten seconds. Lastly, during the recall period, participants were asked to recall the order that the puppy visited the five positions. The percentage of correctly recalled items was the dependent measure. A mixed analysis of variance was conducted on percent correct with item position (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th) as a within-subject factor and participant grade (2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th) as a between-participant factor. There were main effects of sequential position, F(4, 188) = 10.46, p< .001, h2 = .18 and grade, F(1, 47) = 5.32, p= .003, h2 = .25. The extent of serial position effect was comparable across grade levels, with no sign of floor or ceiling effect in any group. Overall, older participants had a higher percentage correct recall than younger participants. Additionally, across grade-levels, first-item primacy and last-item recency effects were apparent. Furthermore, there was a significant association between running speed and spatial memory performance, r= -0.396, p= .004. In summary, the results of the current study suggest that the serial position effect is present by 5-years of age and that children’s memory for spatial locations improves with age. Moreover, children with higher percentages of recalled items on the spatial memory task had faster times on the shuttle run. Future research should consider other measurements of physical activity (e.g., strength, agility, coordination) to see whether physical activity, more broadly, relates to spatial memory performance in children.