The overall goal of the research program is to understand flexibility in motor skill acquisition-how infants, children, and adults learn to select appropriate actions, modify ongoing actions, and construct new actions in accordance with thecurrent constraints on action. Flexibility is imperative for adaptive, functional action because local conditions are continually changing. A primary source of variability is the body. Changes in body dimensions and abilities are particularly dramatic during infancy, but throughout the life span, both permanent and temporary alterations to the body change the biomechanical constraints on action. The proposed research aims to: (1) Compareflexibilityin in^nt motor skill acquisition to older children, young adults, and elderly adults based on changes in body constraints;(2) Characterize how body constraints affect the perceptual information obtained during spontaneous visual exploration;and (3) Investigate effects of body constraints in specialized perception-action systems. The studies will use apparatuses and procedures (ascending/descending adjustable cliff, reaching and locomoting through apertures, dynamic reaching in the context of ongoing movement, brachiating over monkey bars) and technologies (head- mounted eye-tracking, video tracking, computerized behavioral coding, hfiotlon tracking) developed in the previous project period to track changes inflexibilityduring leaming and development in infancy and across the life span.

Public Health Relevance

This research on basic perceptual-motor processes has implications for understanding causes of accidental injury from falling and entrapment. The focus on body constraints is relevant for understanding adaptive motor function in people with atypical body dimensions or.size due to obesity, eating disorders, pregnancy, birth defects, and injury.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Type
Method to Extend Research in Time (MERIT) Award (R37)
Project #
5R37HD033486-20
Application #
8658440
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (NSS)
Program Officer
Freund, Lisa S
Project Start
1996-05-24
Project End
2016-04-30
Budget Start
2014-05-01
Budget End
2015-04-30
Support Year
20
Fiscal Year
2014
Total Cost
$542,581
Indirect Cost
$182,508
Name
New York University
Department
Psychology
Type
Other Domestic Higher Education
DUNS #
041968306
City
New York
State
NY
Country
United States
Zip Code
10012
Kretch, Kari S; Adolph, Karen E (2016) The organization of exploratory behaviors in infant locomotor planning. Dev Sci :
Cole, Whitney G; Robinson, Scott R; Adolph, Karen E (2016) Bouts of steps: The organization of infant exploration. Dev Psychobiol 58:341-54
Karasik, Lana B; Tamis-LeMonda, Catherine S; Adolph, Karen E (2016) Decisions at the Brink: Locomotor Experience Affects Infants' Use of Social Information on an Adjustable Drop-off. Front Psychol 7:797
Comalli, David M; Keen, Rachel; Abraham, Evelyn S et al. (2016) The development of tool use: Planning for end-state comfort. Dev Psychol 52:1878-1892
Franchak, John M; Heeger, David J; Hasson, Uri et al. (2016) Free Viewing Gaze Behavior in Infants and Adults. Infancy 21:262-287
Soska, Kasey C; Robinson, Scott R; Adolph, Karen E (2015) A new twist on old ideas: how sitting reorients crawlers. Dev Sci 18:206-18
Kretch, Kari S; Adolph, Karen E (2015) Active vision in passive locomotion: real-world free viewing in infants and adults. Dev Sci 18:736-50
Karasik, Lana B; Tamis-LeMonda, Catherine S; Adolph, Karen E et al. (2015) Places and postures: A cross-cultural comparison of sitting in 5-month-olds. J Cross Cult Psychol 46:1023-1038
Nayar, Kritika; Franchak, John; Adolph, Karen et al. (2015) From local to global processing: the development of illusory contour perception. J Exp Child Psychol 131:38-55
Adolph, Karen E; Tamis-LeMonda, Catherine S (2014) The Costs and Benefits of Development: The Transition From Crawling to Walking. Child Dev Perspect 8:187-192

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