Exploration of the Hemispheric Differences in Number Processing of the Brain

Aaron Wyland Walters



The current study explored how reaction time and accuracy differed in the left and right visual fields by altering various dot clusters in both number and organization. Researchers have hypothesized that the left hemisphere uses counting to judge small, disorganized clusters of objects accurately and that the right hemisphere uses estimation to judge clusters organized in geometric shape accurately. The current study tested both visual fields of participant’s with organized and unorganized clusters of dots. Dots were clustered between 3 and 12. The clusters were presented on separate sides of a computer screen to analyze visual field differences in counting and estimation. A central target was presented on the screen to maintain central focus for the visual fields. Data from 40 participants (30 men, 10 women) from a small liberal arts college indicated that when clusters reached between 7 and 8 dots, organization in the right visual field created inaccuracy in judgment. Reaction time data indicated that as number level increased, reaction time slowed. Reaction time data also showed that organization slowed reaction times in both visual fields. These data indicated that different numerical judgment abilities do exist within the hemispheres.


hemisphere; dot clusters; visual fields; estimation; counting

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© 2017 Journal of Student Research ISSN: 2167-1907