Spatial Concepts and Reference Frames
Morse, Douglas Lawrence
Research in linguistics and psychology suggests that spatial concepts contain information specifying the reference frame parameters needed to configure a reference frame for applying the concept correctly. This implies that reference frame reconfiguration is driven by spatial concepts. Borrowing from methods in explicit symbolic cuing and task switching, four experiments contrasted this concept-driven hypothesis with a property-driven hypothesis which posits reference frame parameters are only reconfigured when their corresponding properties in the environment have changed. The selective influence of reference frame property repetitions and alternations on reconfiguration was assessed by measuring repetition benefits and advance reconfiguration. The pattern of results better supported the concept-driven account, but only for the conditions where the spatial concept changed. A hybrid account is proposed that might more fully account for reference frame reconfiguration.