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Effects of Causal Perception on Perceived Object’s Moving Directions

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Tutor: ChenShuo;ShenMoWei
School: Zhejiang University
Course: Applied Psychology
Keywords: causal perception,moving directions perception,delay,collision angular
CLC: B842
Type: Master's thesis
Year:  2011
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Abstract:
Causal perception is essential for people to understand the world. Evidence has demonstrated that causal perception is significantly affected by visual information including time, space and objects’ moving directions. On the other hand, recent studies exhibited a reversal effect that people’s sense of time and space could be underestimated when causality was perceived. Meanwhile, the effect of causality on the perception of moving directions is still unclear.Therefore, adopting an oblique collision paradigm, four experiments were designed to investigate the effect of causality on perceived moving directions. The first experiment took the delay operation to manipulate participants’causal perception and hence examined whether a performance difference appeared on perceived moving directions between causal conditions. The second experiment removed causal perception by eliminating the launcher’s colliding movement to investigate the effect of delay operation on moving-direction-perception. The third experiment fixed the launcher’s after-collision moving direction and manipulated the two objects’collision angular to inspect its effect on perceiving the launchee’s moving directions. The fourth experiment controlled collision angular while changed the launcher’s after-collision moving directions to survey the effect on the launchee’s moving-direction-perception. The main results of the present study are displayed as follows:(1) Delay operation impacted the causal perception significantly; the sense of collision was stronger in the no-delay condition (collision condition) than in the delay condition.(2) The perceived moving directions of launchee were more biased to its theoretical moving directions in collision condition than in delay condition.(3) Participants’ performance on perceiving the launchee’s moving directions showed no significant difference between two delay collision conditions after removed the launcher’s colliding movement. (4) Perception of the launchee’s theoretical moving directions was affected by the launcher’s after-collision moving directions while collision angular’s effect on the lacunchee’s moving-direction-perception was not significant.Aforementioned results showed that causal perception has an effect on the perception of objects’ moving directions. The perceived launchee’s moving directions were more biased to its theoretical directions when a collision was perceived beforehand. Participants may have taken the launcher’s after-collision moving directions as the major cue to infer the launchee’s theoretical moving directions.
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