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Psychology

Timing the Conscious Intention to Move

Jesse Huston ('10); Eve Isham ('09 CGU); William Banks

A large body of research has been done using analog clocks to take self-reported measurements of people’s movements and intentions to move. Subjects in these experiments may extrapolate the positions of these fast-moving clocks based on their trajectories and provide researchers with inaccurate answers. To test whether this is so, we eliminated the trajectory judgment by measuring subjects’ movements and intentions to move using digital clocks that displayed numbers rather than an analog hand. Each clock was tested at three different refresh rates (20 Hz, 10 Hz, and 6.67 Hz). Previous results show subjects reporting that they moved before they actually did when using an analog clock. With the digital clocks, subjects report that they move after they actually moved.
Funding provided by: The Aubrey H. and Eileen J. Seed Award (JH); Pomona College Psychology Dept.

Children's Pronoun Errors: Me and My for I

Jennifer Sweda ('11); Diego Garcia ('10); Patricia Smiley; Lillian Ku Chang (CGU)

Children vary in the types of errors they commit while learning personal pronouns. In particular, some children replace I with me (Me get the cookie), some replace I with my in a similar way (My get a teddy), and some make both types of errors. The data come from eleven longitudinal case studies from the CHILDES database. This project studies children’s misuse of me and my as subject terms, and investigates its relationship with parent usage of these pronouns. Children whose parent input is highly contrastive (I/Mommy and you/child name) commit fewer errors than children whose parent input is less contrastive. Additionally, high pronoun input in subject position from parents might lead their children to commit predominantly my for I errors.
Funding provided by: Pomona College SURP (JS)

Research at Pomona