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Publication . Article . 2021

Perceiving size through sound in sighted and visually impaired children

Luigi F. Cuturi; Giulia Cappagli; Alessia Tonelli; Elena Cocchi; Monica Gori;
Open Access  
Published: 24 Sep 2021 Journal: Cognitive Development, volume 60, page 101,125 (issn: 0885-2014, Copyright policy )
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Associations between sensory features of different natures are defined as crossmodal correspondences. In the context of size perception, low pitch sound frequencies are often associated with larger objects and high pitch with smaller objects. Here we investigate such crossmodal correspondences in sighted and visually-impaired children. In Experiment 1, after listening to sounds (250–5000 Hz pure tones), children aged 6–11 years were asked to draw a circle "as big as the sound was". In Experiment 2, children aged 6–14 years who were blind or had low vision performed a similar task. In accordance with previous research, we observed that the circle size drawn depends on participants’ age and we confirm the presence of pitch-size associations in sighted children. In visually-impaired children, such associations are influenced by residual vision, suggesting an anchoring of size perception to level of residual vision. These results reveal novel dynamics underlying the advancing of visual loss and the emergence of compensatory mechanisms in childhood.
Subjects by Vocabulary

Microsoft Academic Graph classification: Audiology medicine.medical_specialty medicine Sensory system Context (language use) Pitch (Music) Crossmodal Dynamics (music) Active listening Psychology Size Perception Sound (geography) geography.geographical_feature_category geography

Medical Subject Headings: genetic structures eye diseases


Developmental and Educational Psychology, Experimental and Cognitive Psychology

Funded by
EC| MYSpace
The role of vision on perceptual space representation
  • Funder: European Commission (EC)
  • Project Code: 948349
  • Funding stream: H2020 | ERC | ERC-STG
Exploiting the best sensory modality for learning arithmetic and geometrical concepts based on multisensory interactive Information and Communication Technologies and serious games
  • Funder: European Commission (EC)
  • Project Code: 732391
  • Funding stream: H2020 | RIA