Tasks financed by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education on the basis of the contract no. 801/P-DUN/2018 out of the funds designed for activities promoting science: Preparation and editing of English versions of articles, Financing foreign Editors-in-Chief, Dissemination of publications and increasing their accessibility to a broad range of readers, Creation of the XML conversion platform to improve the access to the articles (2018-2019).

Zadania finansowane w ramach umowy 801/P-DUN/2018 ze środków Ministra Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wyższego przeznaczonych na działalność upowszechniającą naukę: Finansowanie zagranicznych redaktorów naczelnych; Przygotowanie i edycja anglojęzycznych publikacji; Upowszechnianie publikacji i ułatwianie dostępu do nich szerokiemu gronu odbiorców; Utworzenie nowej platformy do udostępniania artykułów.


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Volume 15 Issue 3 (2019)

Expansion and Contraction Modulate Visual Short-Term Memory original article

pp. 169-184 | First published on 30 August 2019 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0266-z

Junichi Takahashi, Yousuke Kawaichi, Jiro Gyoba


We examined the influence of expansion and contraction on visual short-term memory (VSTM) using a change-detection task. In each trial, several expanding/contracting line segments with various orientations were presented in two successive displays. The orientation of objects in the second display was either identical to, or different from, that of the first display. Observers were asked to judge the presence or absence of an orientation change in successive displays. Results showed that memory performance for expanding objects was higher than for contracting objects (expansion benefit: Experiments 1A and 1B). Further experiments focused on VSTM processing (encoding, storage, and retrieval). Regarding the retrieval stage, an expansion benefit was replicated only when the direction of motion was consistent between two successive displays (Experiment 2A). A cueing stimulus enhanced the memory performance for both expanding and contracting motions and eliminated the expansion benefit (Experiment 2B). Regarding the storage stage, we found the expansion benefit occurred only for shorter blank intervals between the two displays (Experiment 3). Regarding the encoding stage, the expansion benefit was observed regardless of presentation times (Experiment 4). These results indicate the possibility that expanding and contracting motions modulate VSTM.

Keywords: expansion/contraction, visual short-term memory, change-detection task, VSTM processing

The Disentangled Sub-Processes Involved in Implied Motion Contributing to Food Freshness: The Neural Evidence from ERPs original article

pp. 185-198 | First published on 30 August 2019 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0267-9

Kaiyun Li, Yan Bi, Yifan Wang, Mingxian Zhang, Yong-Jin Liu, Huijing Yang, Fengxun Lin


Implied motion can enhance the consumer’s judgment of food freshness. However, this enhancing effect has only been investigated for a few products. Furthermore, researchers have not conclusively determined whether the effects of the low-level visual sensory processing and high-level conceptual processing on food evaluation differ. In Experiment 1, using different fruits in static water (fruit_IS), fruit with implied moving water (fruit_IM), or only fruits as stimuli, we initially generalized the effect of implied motion on the broader category of fruit, and implied motion improved the perceived freshness of the fruit. In Experiment 2, we recorded event-related potentials (ERPs) and measured the temporal processes involved in the mechanism by which implied motion improved perceived fruit freshness. The behavioral results further supported the findings from Experiment 1. The ERP data revealed a pronounced positive difference between fruit_IM and fruit-only conditions recorded from posterior electrodes at approximately 200-300 ms (P2). This difference reflected the low-level visual implied motion sensory processing involved in the effect of implied motion on improving food freshness. Additionally, an early frontocentral negativity difference of approximately 300-500 ms between fruit_IM and fruit-only conditions was recorded, which reflected the high-level visual conceptual processing involved in the effect of implied motion on improving food freshness. These results strengthen and extend previous behavioral findings indicating that implied motion enhances the consumer’s judgment of food freshness across various food categories, and improves our understanding of the cognitive processes involved in the mechanism by which implied motion influences food judgments.

Keywords: implied motion, fruit freshness, taste, P2, early frontocentral negativity, low-level visual sensory process, high-level visual process

The Effects of Binaural and Monoaural Beat Stimulation on Cognitive Functioning in Subjects with Different Levels of Emotionality original article

pp. 199-207 | First published on 30 August 2019 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0268-8

Hessel Engelbregt, Nora Meijburg, Marjolein Schulten, Oliver Pogarell, Jan Berend Deijen


Today, binaural and monaural beats are offered over the Internet or by mental health institutes to improve wellbeing or cognitive functioning. This improvement is explained by the assumption that the brain adapts its brainwave frequency to the frequency of the auditory beat. The present study examined the effects of binaural and monaural beat stimulation on attention and working memory in high and low emotional participants. A group of 24 participants (16 females, 8 males) between 19 and 31 years old (M = 22.33, SD = 3.42) performed a Flanker task to measure attention and a Klingberg task to measure working memory while listening to white noise (WN), 40 Hz gamma binaural beat (BB) and 40 Hz gamma monaural beat (MB). Speed of performance on all three levels of difficulty of the Flanker attention task was faster under the BB and MB condition than under WN. No differences were found between BB and MB conditions. With respect to the quality of performance on the Flanker attention task and the Klingberg working memory task no significant differences under the WN, MB, and BB condition were found. Finally, as participants with low or high emotionality did not respond differently to BB and MB under any of the conditions, effects of BB and MB seem similar in high and low emotional participants. The present study supports the notion that faster attention processing may equally be attributed to the influence of BB and MB. Further research is recommended to gain more insight in the role of factors such as duration of stimulation of BB and MB, frequency range, most appropriate carrier tones, and the role of personality traits.

Keywords: binaural beats, monaural beats, attention, auditory beat stimulation, emotionality, memory, Flanker task, Klingberg task

The Acute Effect of Exercise on Executive Function and Attention: Resistance Versus Aerobic Exercise original article

pp. 208-215 | First published on 3 September 2019 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0269-7

Sharon Tsuk, Yael Netz, Ayelet Dunsky, Aviva Zeev, Rafi Carasso, Tzvi Dwolatzky, Riki Salem, Shai Behar, Arie Rotstein


Acute aerobic exercise was shown to enhance such cognitive functions as executive function (EF) and attention. Acute resistance exercise was also shown to enhance cognitive functions, however, only few studies directly compared these two exercise modalities. The aim of this study was to evaluate the acute effect of a typical moderate intensity resistance exercise session as compared to a typical moderate intensity aerobic session, on executive function and attention. A counterbalanced repeated measures experimental design was applied. Forty physical education students (21 women; 19 men, age = 25.7±2.84 years) were tested before and after three sessions: aerobic, resistance, and control. Each session consisted of 30 minutes of exercise or a rest. Executive function and attention were assessed by components of the computerized Stroop Catch game and Go-NoGo cognitive tests. A two-way ANOVA showed a greater increase in attention scores after the resistance sessions (p < .05) compared to the control condition. Attention scores in the aerobic sessions showed a trend toward improvement but did not reach statistical significance. Scores of EF significantly increased, both after the resistance session and the aerobic session (p < .05), but not after rest in the control condition. Our findings show that an acute session of resistance exercise increased both Attention and EF test scores, while an aerobic exercise session improved only the EF scores.

Keywords: cognitive function, physical activity, cycling, strength

On the One Hand or on the Other: Trade-Off in Timing Precision in Bimanual Musical Scale Playing original article

pp. 216-224 | First published on 3 September 2019 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0271-5

Floris Tijmen van Vugt, Eckart Altenmüller


Music performance requires simultaneously producing challenging movement sequences with the left and right hand. A key question in bimanual motor control research is whether bimanual movements are produced by combining unimanual controllers or through a dedicated bimanual controller. Here, 34 expert pianists performed musical scale playing movements with the left or right hand alone and with both hands simultaneously. We found that for the left hand, scale playing was more variable when playing with both hands simultaneously rather than with one hand at a time, but for the right hand, performance was identical. This indicates that when task constraints are high, musicians prioritize timing accuracy in the right hand at the cost of detriment of performance in the left hand. We also found that individual differences in timing substantially overlap between the unimanual and bimanual condition, suggesting control policies are similar but not identical when playing with two hands or one. In the bimanual condition, the left-hand keystrokes tended to occur before right-hand ones, and more so when the hands were further apart. Performance of the two hands was furthermore coupled so that they tended to be early and late together, especially in the beginning and end of each scale. This suggests that experts are able to achieve tightly coupled timing of scale playing movements between the hands. Taken together, these findings show evidence for partially overlapping and partially separate controllers for bimanual and unimanual movements in piano playing.

Keywords: music performance, motor control, bimanual control, expertise

The Role of Time Constraints in Athletes' Egocentric Mental Rotation Performance original article

pp. 225-235 | First published on 22 September 2019 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0270-6

Tian Feng, Yawei Li, Zhiguang Ji, Zhongqiu Zhang


A selective effect of motor expertise on mental rotation is revealed by a high correlation between the performance of sports experts and ability on a mental rotation task. Evidence is shown by studies involving a spatial factor, such as image interference or a movement constraint. Alternatively, the time constraint, as another performance factor, is considered critical in the effect of sport expertise on mental rotation. Three experiments were conducted to examine the role of time constraints in egocentric mental rotation and the stage performance of athletes (divers) and nonathletes. In Experiment 1, an egocentric mental rotation task in an untimed condition was conducted, and reaction times (RTs) , error rates (ERs), RTs at 0 °, and mental rotation speed were assessed. The results indicated that divers outperformed nonathletes in terms of RT, as well as perceptual and decision stages and rotation stages. Experiments 2 and 3 added a relative time constraint (subtracting 1/2 SD of all the subjects’ RT from the M of each group’s RT) and an absolute time constraint (subtracting 1/2 SD of all the subjects’ RT from the M of all the subjects’ RT) to the task, respectively. Superior RT and lower ER were observed for the divers in the time constraint condition. Moreover, the results illustrated that divers were faster than nonathletes in both stages when facing time pressure. In general, the present study has, for the first time, confirmed the role of time in the relationship between sports expertise and mental rotation.

Keywords: mental rotation, sport expertise, process stages, egocentric transformations, embodied cognition