Brescia Psychology Undergraduate Honours Theses

Date of Award

4-2019

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Jennifer Sutton

Abstract

Cognitive maps are mental representations of the configuration of landmarks from an environment (Tolman, 1948; O’Keefe & Nadel, 1978). Broad individual differences in the accuracy of cognitive maps exist, however, it is not yet clear what underlies these differences (Weisberg et al., 2013). In the current study, participants first completed a spatial perceptive-taking task called the Spatial Orientation Test (SOT; Hegarty & Waller, 2004). They then were taken on a guided walking tour of an unfamiliar area of campus where they were asked to remember the names and locations of eight target landmarks. Participants’ ability to create a cognitive map of the area was assessed by having them estimate the direction between the target landmarks and draw a sketch map of them. A linear regression showed that spatial perspective-taking performance on the SOT was an accurate predictor of accuracy on the direction estimation task.

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