Skip to main content


Swipe om te navigeren naar een ander artikel

25-11-2015 | Original Article | Uitgave 3/2016

Psychological Research 3/2016

Counting is a spatial process: evidence from eye movements

Psychological Research > Uitgave 3/2016
Matthias Hartmann, Fred W. Mast, Martin H. Fischer


Spatial–numerical associations (small numbers—left/lower space and large numbers—right/upper space) are regularly found in simple number categorization tasks. These associations were taken as evidence for a spatially oriented mental number line. However, the role of spatial–numerical associations during more complex number processing, such as counting or mental arithmetic is less clear. Here, we investigated whether counting is associated with a movement along the mental number line. Participants counted aloud upward or downward in steps of 3 for 45 s while looking at a blank screen. Gaze position during upward counting shifted rightward and upward, while the pattern for downward counting was less clear. Our results, therefore, confirm the hypothesis of a movement along the mental number line for addition. We conclude that space is not only used to represent number magnitudes but also to actively operate on numbers in more complex tasks such as counting, and that the eyes reflect this spatial mental operation.

Log in om toegang te krijgen

Met onderstaand(e) abonnement(en) heeft u direct toegang:

BSL Psychologie Totaal

Met BSL Psychologie Totaal blijf je als professional steeds op de hoogte van de nieuwste ontwikkelingen binnen jouw vak. Met het online abonnement heb je toegang tot een groot aantal boeken, protocollen, vaktijdschriften en e-learnings op het gebied van psychologie en psychiatrie. Zo kun je op je gemak en wanneer het jou het beste uitkomt verdiepen in jouw vakgebied.

Over dit artikel

Andere artikelen Uitgave 3/2016

Psychological Research 3/2016 Naar de uitgave