We examined 5-month-old infants' sensitivity to audiovisually coherent and incoherent events. A person speaking and an automobile with engine running were filmed approaching and receding with corresponding (coherent) soundtracks. Infants were tested with a habituation paradigm in which they observed coherent or incoherent films, involving, respectively, acoustical radial motion in the direction seen or opposite to the direction seen. Infants habituated to both person and car films, but coherent events uniformly yielded more rapid habituation than did incoherent ones. In addition, infants treated silent events more like audiovisual coherence than like incoherence. Infants habituated more to cars than to people, suggesting that a speaking person may especially maintain infant attention.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)