Copying and reproducing pictures in relation to subjects' operative levels

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Past Piagetian memory research has established that Ss' operative levels influence their recall of operatively derived stimuli. To determine the locus of operative influence, children from Grades 1-5 with immature, transitional, or mature concepts of verticality were asked to copy and/or to reproduce verticality stimuli. Stimuli were either operatively advanced (a vertical tree on a hillside) or primitive (a tipped tree). Memory was tested immediately (Exp I, 96 Ss), 1 wk (Exp II, 168 Ss), or 5 mo (Exp III, 46 Ss) after the initial viewing. In each study there was a significant relationship between operative level and performance on the operatively advanced stimulus only. For the tipped stimulus, more distortion was evident in memory than in copy drawings. Contrary to predictions, however, there was no difference between distortion in copy and memory drawings for the straight stimulus regardless of Ss' operative levels. Results suggest that progressive distortion increases over time but that regressive distortion occurs before the stimulus is removed from sight. (8 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)357-365
Number of pages9
JournalDevelopmental psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1981

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Demography
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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