Senior Honors Projects, 2010-current

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Award

Spring 2018

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)

Department

Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders

Advisor(s)

Rory A. DePaolis

Jaime B. Lee

Geralyn R. Timler

Abstract

By 11 months of age, infants recognize commonly occurring word forms in their environment. The Head Turn Preference Paradigm (HTPP) is the one method of measuring infant word form recognition. The HTPP uses looking times as judged by a head turn of the infant towards or away from a speaker. This method is thus subject to infant attention, which can make it difficult to get accurate results when infants are not paying attention due to external factors (for example, teething). Pupillometry is a non-invasive, physiological measurement that uses pupil dilation to assess cognitive processes. Pupil dilations have been found to be an accurate measurement of cognitive load in infants because pupil dilations reflect involuntary activity in the nervous system. Therefore, pupillometry is a non-behavioral assessment of infant word form recognition that may provide richer data than the HTPP. This Honors project was a pilot study for a larger study. The larger study assesses infant word form recognition through pupil dilations and head turns using a common form of the HTPP called the One Screen Head Turn Preference Test. This Honors project compares the results of pupillometry and the One Screen Head Turn Preference Test in one infant from the larger study. It makes a direct comparison of the two methodologies to determine if they can be used side by side to assess infant behavior.

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