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Differences in Navigational Ability and Memory in Males and Females A Focus on Road Map usage versus Landmark Map usage in Navigation.

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Presentation on theme: "Differences in Navigational Ability and Memory in Males and Females A Focus on Road Map usage versus Landmark Map usage in Navigation."— Presentation transcript:

1 Differences in Navigational Ability and Memory in Males and Females A Focus on Road Map usage versus Landmark Map usage in Navigation

2 Introduction Navigation is vital for all species Bees: /watch?v=-7ijI-g4jHg /watch?v=-7ijI-g4jHg Evolutionarily important

3 Initial Ideas Motivation Music Mazes and Memory Navigational Ability

4 Current Idea Out of our four ideas we chose navigational ability Ended up focusing on maps as our area of study Original question: How effective are “ tourist ” maps, can you navigate with these maps just as effectively as with a road map?

5 Spatial Ability, Navigational … Subjects asked to study map Subjects had to give directions Found: Females: Landmark Males: Geometric Information Problem: Failed to illustrate capability over preference Dabbs, J.,Chang, E., Strong, R., Milun, R. (1998). Spatial ability, navigation strategy and geographic knowledge among men and women. Evolution of Human Behaviour, 19,

6 Males and Females use … Subjects completed virtual MWM task Two conditions: A) Landmarks available B) Landmarks not available Found: Removal of landmarks more detrimental to women Problem: Highly specific task Sandstrom N., Kaufman, J., Huettel, S. (1998). Males and females use different distal cues in a virtual environment navigation task. Cognitive Brain Research, 6,

7 Our Improvements Complex, realistic setting Measured capabilities and not preference

8 Hypothesis Males would perform better than females Females will perform best in the landmark condition

9 Evolution of the Idea Provide a “ tourist ” style map, or road-map. Memorize it Recall best route from A to B Alternative idea: Provide a map with parts blanked out, ask them to fill in the missing parts Control condition: landmarks and maps

10 Evolution of the Idea Problem: Were we really testing navigation or memory? Answer: Google Earth Provide a map with an end point only, have the subject navigate there in Google Earth

11 Evolution of the Idea More Problems: Cannot directly test two different kinds of maps, “ apples and oranges ”. We have 2 measures of map reading But, we cannot say if a person does better on Map A, the style of Map A is better, there are too many variables Instead, we should compare the ability to read maps to a Third variable: Gender

12 Evolution of the Idea Measuring navigation ability or skill with a computer program? 2 methods to control for this 1: Questionnaire, ask how much they play video games 2: Distance (using a ruler tool) rather than time as the main variable Time likely reflects skill with the program, distance/accuracy is a better predictor of navigational ability

13 Evolution of the Idea Even more Problems: Testing map reading not navigation Decided we could not properly test navigation if the subject can always see the map But memorizing would be much too hard unless we also provide them with the start and end position But this would be too easy! Solution: Provide 3 start positions (2 are false) and the end position. 3 minutes to study map

14 The Maps Had difficulty finding good “ Tourist maps ” to use Problems: Map area too large or small Not enough land marks shown on the map Map too hard to read/messy Land marks were too biased

15 Early “ Tourist Maps ”

16 The Maps Decided to make our own maps For better control the exact same map was used as the base for all 3 conditions Road maps Landmark maps Control maps had all information This was done for 3 cities: Boston, Denver, San Francisco. Areas were approximately 1km x 0.5km

17 The Maps Original map of Boston From Google Maps

18 The Maps Road map of Boston

19 The Maps Landmark map of Boston

20 The Maps Control map of Boston

21 Google Earth We made use of numerous features in Google Earth to make it more realistic The view: ground level view – too hard to see street names Birds eye view – too easy to find the end point A view of 75m above the ground was chosen We added in street names to help people find their way around A border was created to warn subjects if they were leaving the area Start and end points appeared as flags

22

23 Method Subjects: 18 undergraduate students Apparatus: Google Earth was used, subjects were asked to navigate to the end point using only the arrow keys and the shift key to turn There were three map conditions

24 Method Completed all conditions on the same day Practice introduction to Google Earth was provided Subjects were given 3 minutes to study the map Google Earth trial began After completing the first condition the subject went on to complete the other two conditions The shortest route distance was calculated (km). If subjects took longer than 5 minutes they were removed from the experiment

25 Experimental Design Design Males Boston: L San Francisco: R Denver: C San Francisco: L Denver: R Boston: C Denver: L Boston: R San Francisco: C Females Boston: L San Francisco: R Denver: C San Francisco: L Denver: R Boston: C Denver: L Boston: R San Francisco: C

26 Should Have Done: Design Males Boston: L San Francisco: R Denver: C L,R,C L,C,R R,C,L R,L,C C,R,L C,L,R San Francisco: L Denver: R Boston: C L,R,C L,C,R R,C,L R,L,C C,R,L C,L,R Denver: L Boston: R San Francisco: C L,R,C L,C,R R,C,L R,L,C C,R,L C,L,R Females Boston: L San Francisco: R Denver: C L,R,C L,C,R R,C,L R,L,C C,R,L C,L,R San Francisco: L Denver: R Boston: C L,R,C L,C,R R,C,L R,L,C C,R,L C,L,R Denver: L Boston: R San Francisco: C L,R,C L,C,R R,C,L R,L,C C,R,L C,L,R

27 Males are Better then Females In Distance … Smaller distance means better performance Males performed better then females (F=6.783, p=0.019 )

28 But not in time …. Less time  better performance Males spent less time finding the target. But the difference was not significant (F=1.619, p=.221)

29 High Effect of Interaction F= , p<0.05 F= , p<0.05

30 No Difference Between Conditions (distance) F=0.52, p=0. 599

31 No Difference Between Conditions (time) (F=.826, p=.447)

32 Discussion Men preformed better overall in all conditions Women did not perform best at landmark condition. Women best at road map followed by landmark and worst at control

33 Discussion Men best control and no difference in road or landmark. Both time and distance measures, men best in the control condition while women did worst in the control condition.

34 Implications This study adds to the knowledge about navigational abilities. Improvement of navigation and systems like GPS. Design of better maps. A start site for future studies.

35 Future Studies More life-like scenarios- driving view, realistic environment How men and women differ in terms of choosing and filtering information Additional control condition with no road or landmarks available

36 Errors and Improvements Google Earth Problems Ruler, view, road names, loading/crashing, obstruction of buildings Map Problems Denver- numbered roads Not equal difficultly Landmark- not on right spot, mental rotation

37 More Improvements Procedural Problems Too many experimenters Non-randomization of trial order Time of practice trial not fixed

38 What We Learned From Running This Study Learned how to Design and run the experiment. How to find and deal with the subjects. How to analyze and interpret the data. How to work together. How to make mistakes and how to learn from them

39 Contributions Creation of Maps and Google Earth standards: Rory Introduction and Methods: Katelyn Results and Data Analysis: Natalya Discussion: Diana


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