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Accurate memory for object location by individuals with intellectual disability: Absolute spatial tagging instead of configural processing?
Research In Developmental Disabilities
Using head-mounted eye tracker material, we assessed spatial recognition abilities (e.g., reaction to object permutation, removal or replacement with a new object) in participants with intellectual disabilities. The "Intellectual Disabilities (ID)" group (n=40) obtained a score totalling a 93.7% success rate, whereas the "Normal Control" group (n=40) scored 55.6% and took longer to fix their attention on the displaced object. The participants with an intellectual disability thus had a more accurate perception of spatial changes than controls. Interestingly, the ID participants were more reactive to object displacement than to removal of the object. In the specific test of novelty detection, however, the scores were similar, the two groups approaching 100% detection. Analysis of the strategies expressed by the ID group revealed that they engaged in more systematic object checking and were more sensitive than the control group to changes in the structure of the environment. Indeed, during the familiarisation phase, the "ID" group explored the collection of objects more slowly, and fixed their gaze for a longer time upon a significantly lower number of fixation points during visual sweeping.
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