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On the origin of vertical line bisection errors

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image of Spatial Vision
For more content, see Multisensory Research and Seeing and Perceiving.

Four experiments examined the biases of individual subjects when attempting to bisect vertical lines, and tested various hypotheses concerning the origin of vertical bisection errors (VBEs). In each experiment, individual differences on the vertical line bisection task were compared to individual differences on another task to evaluate whether the tasks were systematically related. In the first experiment, VBEs were found not to correlate with horizontal line bisection errors (HBEs). In the second experiment, VBEs were found not to correlate with the size of the horizontal-vertical illusion (HVI). In the third experiment, VBEs were found not to correlate with differences in perceived length of vertical lines presented in the upper and lower visual fields that were displaced horizontally. In the fourth experiment, VBEs were found to correlate with bisection errors of an open vertical interval. The results of the first three studies are counter to various hypotheses of the origins of vertical bisection errors. The last experiment suggests that lines, per se, are unnecessary for VBEs. Rather, it is important that the upper and lower segments of the stimulus that are judged to be equal on vertical bisection tasks are co-extensive.


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