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Journal Article

Observation of depictive versus tracing gestures selectively aids verbal versus visual–spatial learning in primary school children

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Van Wermeskerken, M., Fijan, N., Eielts, C., & Pouw, W. (2016). Observation of depictive versus tracing gestures selectively aids verbal versus visual–spatial learning in primary school children. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 30, 806-814. doi:10.1002/acp.3256.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0005-440E-0
Abstract
Previous research has established that gesture observation aids learning in children. The current study examinedwhether observation of gestures (i.e. depictive and tracing gestures) differentially affected verbal and visual–spatial retention whenlearning a route and its street names. Specifically, we explored whether children (n = 97) with lower visual and verbal working-memory capacity benefited more from observing gestures as compared with children who score higher on these traits. To thisend, 11- to 13-year-old children were presented with an instructional video of a route containing no gestures, depictive gestures,tracing gestures or both depictive and tracing gestures. Results indicated that the type of observed gesture affected performance:Observing tracing gestures or both tracing and depictive gestures increased performance on route retention, while observingdepictive gestures or both depictive and tracing gestures increased performance on street name retention. These effects werenot differentially affected by working-memory capacity