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Children's scale errors are a natural consequence of learning to associate objects with actions: a computational model

Grzyb, BJ; Nagai, Y; Asada, M; Cattani, A; Floccia, C; Cangelosi, A; (2019) Children's scale errors are a natural consequence of learning to associate objects with actions: a computational model. Developmental Science , 22 (4) , Article e12777. 10.1111/desc.12777. Green open access

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Abstract

Young children sometimes attempt an action on an object, which is inappropriate because of the object size – they make scale errors. Existing theories suggest that scale errors may result from immaturities in children's action planning system, which might be overpowered by increased complexity of object representations or developing teleofunctional bias. We used computational modelling to emulate children's learning to associate objects with actions and to select appropriate actions, given object shape and size. A computational Developmental Deep Model of Action and Naming (DDMAN) was built on the dual‐route theory of action selection, in which actions on objects are selected via a direct (non‐semantic or visual) route, or an indirect (semantic) route. As in case of children, DDMAN produced scale errors: the number of errors was high at the beginning of training and decreased linearly but did not disappear completely. Inspection of emerging object‐action associations revealed that these were coarsely organized by shape, hence leading DDMAN to initially select actions based on shape rather than size. With experience, DDMAN gradually learned to use size in addition to shape when selecting actions. Overall, our simulations demonstrate that children's scale errors are a natural consequence of learning to associate objects with actions.

Type: Article
Title: Children's scale errors are a natural consequence of learning to associate objects with actions: a computational model
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/desc.12777
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1111/desc.12777
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: scale errors, computational model, action selection, perception-action coupling
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Experimental Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10063671
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