4th Annual Meeting of the International Multisensory Research Forum
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Sarah J. Casey

Haptic own-face recognition

Sarah J. Casey
Department of Psychology, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland

Fiona N. Newell
Department of Psychology, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland

     Abstract ID Number: 75
     Full text: Not available
     Last modified: May 20, 2003

Until very recently, face recognition has been studied almost exclusively within the domain of vision. This study investigated participants' ability to recognise a model of their own face from a series of distractor faces by touch. It also sought to discover whether or not an optimal stimulus orientation existed for the identification of target faces. Participants performed significantly above chance in each of the conditions tested (forward orientation, backward orientation, learning, and vision, p < 0.05). This indicates that there is enough haptic information being extracted from the face to enable positive self-recognition. Analysis of the three haptic conditions returned a main effect for recognition performance, (p < 0.05), with performance differing signifcantly between the backward and learning conditions (p < 0.05) suggesting that learning facilitates recognition from haptic representations. In contrast to previous findings examining viewpoint dependence for haptic object recognition, a greater number of target faces were correctly identified when faces were oriented towards the participants. This is unusual as it is opposite to the orientation in which a haptic representation of one's own face is naturally generated. This suggests that individuals may use a stored visual representation of their face when engaging in own-face haptic recognition.

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