Article

Adult Aging, Processing Style, and The Perception of Biological Motion

College of Life Sciences and Medicine, School of Psychology, University of Aberdeen, William Guild Building, Kings College, Aberdeen AB24 2UB, UK.
Experimental Aging Research (Impact Factor: 0.92). 03/2012; 38(2):169-85. DOI: 10.1080/0361073X.2012.660030
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND/STUDY CONTEXT: Social perception may be influenced by the extent to which individuals focus on global, rather than local, detail-based, processing of information about others. Here the authors investigated whether global processing biases relate to successful detection of actions and emotions from point-light biological motion (BM) stimuli. Also explored is whether age differences in BM perception and global-local processing biases are related.
One hundred and twenty-seven participants (aged 18 to 86) completed tasks assessing BM perception and global-local processing.
Successful decoding of actions and emotions from BM stimuli was correlated with global processing bias. Older adults performed more poorly on BM decoding and had a local processing bias. However, age differences in global-local processing could not fully explain differences in decoding actions or emotions from point-light displays.
Therefore, although there was an association between age, perceptual processing bias, and detection of BM, other factors must be important in explaining age-related change in social perception.

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    • "Ageing is associated with deterioration in visual motion perception . For example, older adults are less accurate than younger adults at processing information in biological motion displays (Billino et al., 2008; Pilz et al., 2010; Insch et al., 2012; Legault et al., 2012), suggesting that their ability to process motion cues relevant to action may be impaired. However, age-related declines in motion perception are not limited to biological motion, as other forms of motion perception are also vulnerable to the ageing process (Billino et al., 2008). "

    Full-text · Dataset · Dec 2013
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    • "Ageing is associated with deterioration in visual motion perception . For example, older adults are less accurate than younger adults at processing information in biological motion displays (Billino et al., 2008; Pilz et al., 2010; Insch et al., 2012; Legault et al., 2012), suggesting that their ability to process motion cues relevant to action may be impaired. However, age-related declines in motion perception are not limited to biological motion, as other forms of motion perception are also vulnerable to the ageing process (Billino et al., 2008). "
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    ABSTRACT: When interpreting other people's movements or actions, observers may not only rely on the visual cues available in the observed movement, but they may also be able to "put themselves in the other person's shoes" by engaging brain systems involved in both "mentalizing" and motor simulation. The ageing process brings changes in both perceptual and motor abilities, yet little is known about how these changes may affect the ability to accurately interpret other people's actions. Here we investigated the effect of ageing on the ability to discriminate the weight of objects based on the movements of actors lifting these objects. Stimuli consisted of videos of an actor lifting a small box weighing 0.05-0.9 kg or a large box weighting 3-18 kg. In a four-alternative forced-choice task, younger and older participants reported the perceived weight of the box in each video. Overall, older participants were less sensitive than younger participants in discriminating the perceived weight of lifted boxes, an effect that was especially pronounced in the small box condition. Weight discrimination performance was better for the large box compared to the small box in both groups, due to greater saliency of the visual cues in this condition. These results suggest that older adults may require more salient visual cues to interpret the actions of others accurately. We discuss the potential contribution of age-related changes in visual and motor function on the observed effects and suggest that older adults' decline in the sensitivity to subtle visual cues may lead to greater reliance on visual analysis of the observed scene and its semantic context.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · Frontiers in Human Neuroscience
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    • "Ageing is associated with deterioration in visual motion perception . For example, older adults are less accurate than younger adults at processing information in biological motion displays (Billino et al., 2008; Pilz et al., 2010; Insch et al., 2012; Legault et al., 2012), suggesting that their ability to process motion cues relevant to action may be impaired. However, age-related declines in motion perception are not limited to biological motion, as other forms of motion perception are also vulnerable to the ageing process (Billino et al., 2008). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: When interpreting other people's movements or actions, observers may not only rely on the visual cues available in the observed movement, but they may also be able to "put themselves in the other person's shoes" by engaging brain systems involved in both "mentalizing" and motor simulation. The ageing process brings changes in both perceptual and motor abilities, yet little is known about how these changes may affect the ability to accurately interpret other people's actions. Here we investigated the effect of ageing on the ability to discriminate the weight of objects based on the movements of actors lifting these objects. Stimuli consisted of videos of an actor lifting a small box weighing 0.05–0.9 kg or a large box weighting 3–18 kg. In a four-alternative forced-choice task, younger and older participants reported the perceived weight of the box in each video. Overall, older participants were less sensitive than younger participants in discriminating the perceived weight of lifted boxes, an effect that was especially pronounced in the small box condition. Weight discrimination performance was better for the large box compared to the small box in both groups, due to greater saliency of the visual cues in this condition. These results suggest that older adults may require more salient visual cues to interpret the actions of others accurately. We discuss the potential contribution of age-related changes in visual and motor function on the observed effects and suggest that older adults' decline in the sensitivity to subtle visual cues may lead to greater reliance on visual analysis of the observed scene and its semantic context.
    Full-text · Dataset · Nov 2013
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