Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics

, Volume 77, Issue 1, pp 207–219 | Cite as

The projected hand illusion: component structure in a community sample and association with demographics, cognition, and psychotic-like experiences

  • Kyran T. Graham
  • Mathew T. Martin-Iverson
  • Nicholas P. Holmes
  • Flavie A. Waters


The projected hand illusion (PHI) is a variant of the rubber hand illusion (RHI), and both are commonly used to study mechanisms of self-perception. A questionnaire was developed by Longo et al. (2008) to measure qualitative changes in the RHI. Such psychometric analyses have not yet been conducted on the questionnaire for the PHI. The present study is an attempt to validate minor modifications of the questionnaire of Longo et al. to assess the PHI in a community sample (n = 48) and to determine the association with selected demographic (age, sex, years of education), cognitive (Digit Span), and clinical (psychotic-like experiences) variables. Principal components analysis on the questionnaire data extracted four components: Embodiment of “Other” Hand, Disembodiment of Own Hand, Deafference, and Agency—in both synchronous and asynchronous PHI conditions. Questions assessing “Embodiment” and “Agency” loaded onto orthogonal components. Greater illusion ratings were positively associated with being female, being younger, and having higher scores on psychotic-like experiences. There was no association with cognitive performance. Overall, this study confirmed that self-perception as measured with PHI is a multicomponent construct, similar in many respects to the RHI. The main difference lies in the separation of Embodiment and Agency into separate constructs, and this likely reflects the fact that the “live” image of the PHI presents a more realistic picture of the hand and of the stroking movements of the experimenter compared with the RHI.


Rubber hand illusion Embodiment Agency Self-perception Principal components analysis Psychotic-like experiences 



This research was supported by National Health and Medical Research Grant 634328.The authors thank Assen Jablenksy, Milan Dragovic, and Joanna Badcock for their early comments in an application for funding, Philippa Martyr for her help recruiting participants, and Laura Firth and Nazim Khan for their invaluable advice and guidance with statistics.


  1. Adamo, D., Alexander, N., & Brown, S. (2009). The influence of age and physical activity on upper limb proprioceptive ability. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 17, 272.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Albrecht, M., Martin-Iverson, M., Price, G., Lee, J., Iyyalol, R., & Waters, F. (2011). Dexamphetamine effects on separate constructs in the rubber hand illusion test. Psychopharmacology, 217, 39–50. doi: 10.1007/s00213-011-2255-y PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Armel, K. C., & Ramachandran, V. S. (2003). Projecting sensations to external objects: Evidence from skin conductance response. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series B: Biological Sciences, 270, 1499–1506.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Arzy, S., Overney, L. S., Landis, T., & Blanke, O. (2006a). Neural mechanisms of embodiment: Asomatognosia due to premotor cortex damage. Archives of Neurology, 63, 1022–1025.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Arzy, S., Thut, G., Mohr, C., Michel, C. M., & Blanke, O. (2006b). Neural basis of embodiment: Distinct contributions of temporoparietal junction and extrastriate body area. Journal of Neuroscience, 26, 8074–8081. doi: 10.1523/jneurosci.0745-06.2006 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Asai, T., Mao, Z., Sugimori, E., & Tanno, Y. (2011). Rubber hand illusion, empathy, and schizotypal experiences in terms of self-other representations. Consciousness and Cognition, 20, 1744–1750. doi: 10.1016/j.concog.2011.02.005 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Blakemore, S. J., Wolpert, D. M., & Frith, C. D. (1999). Spatio-temporal prediction modulates the perception of self-produced stimuli. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 11, 551–559.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Blanke, O., Landis, T., Spinelli, L., & Seeck, M. (2004). Out‐of‐body experience and autoscopy of neurological origin. Brain, 127, 243–258. doi: 10.1093/brain/awh040 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Blanke, O., & Mohr, C. (2005). Out-of-body experience, heautoscopy, and autoscopic hallucination of neurological origin: Implications for neurocognitive mechanisms of corporeal awareness and self-consciousness. Brain Research Reviews, 50, 184–199.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Botvinick, M., & Cohen, J. (1998). Rubber hands ‘feel’ touch that eyes see. Nature, 391, 756.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Bremner, A. J., Hill, E. L., Pratt, M., Rigato, S., & Spence, C. (2013). Bodily illusions in young children: Developmental change in visual and proprioceptive contributions to perceived hand position. Plos One, 8, e51887. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0051887 PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Claridge, G. (1997). Theoretical background and issues. In G. Claridge (Ed.), Schizotypy—Implication for Illness and Health (pp. 3–17). Oxford, NY: Oxford Univ. Press.Google Scholar
  13. Claridge, G., & Beech, T. (1995). Fully and quasi-dimensional constructions of schizotypy. In A. Raine, T. Lencz, & S. A. Mednick (Eds.), Schizotypal personality (pp. 192–216). Cambridge, NY: Cambridge Univ. Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Coslett, H. B., Saffran, E. M., & Schwoebel, J. (2002). Knowledge of the human body - A distinct semantic domain. Neurology, 59, 357–363.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Cowie, D., Makin, T. R., & Bremner, A. J. (2013). Children’s responses to the rubber-hand illusion reveal dissociable pathways in body representation. Psychological Science, 24, 762–769.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Cressman, E., Salomonczyk, D., & Henriques, D. P. (2010). Visuomotor adaptation and proprioceptive recalibration in older adults. Experimental Brain Research, 205, 533–544. doi: 10.1007/s00221-010-2392-2 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Crow, T. (1985). The two-syndrome concept. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 11, 471–486.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. de Vignemont, F. (2010). Body schema and body image–Pros and cons. Neuropsychologia, 48, 669–680.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. de Winter, J. C. F., Dodou, D., & Wieringa, P. A. (2009). Exploratory factor analysis with small sample sizes. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 44, 147–181. doi: 10.1080/00273170902794206 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Dummer, T., Picot-Annand, A., Neal, T., & Moore, C. (2009). Movement and the rubber hand illusion. Perception, 38, 271–280. doi: 10.1068/p5921 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Egsgaard, L. L., Petrini, L., Christoffersen, G., & Arendt-Nielsen, L. (2011). Cortical responses to the mirror box illusion: A high-resolution EEG study. Experimental Brain Research, 215, 345–357. doi: 10.1007/s00221-011-2902-x PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Ehrsson, H. H. (2009). How many arms make a pair? Perceptual illusion of having an additional limb. Perception, 38, 310–312. doi: 10.1068/p6304 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Fox, J., & Weisberg, S. (2011). An (“E-Prime,”) companion to applied regression (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  24. Gentile, G., Petkova, V. I., & Ehrsson, H. H. (2011). Integration of visual and tactile signals from the hand in the human brain: An fMRI study. Journal of Neurophysiology, 105, 910–922. doi: 10.1152/jn.00840.2010 PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Germine, L., Benson, T. L., Cohen, F., & Hooker, C. I. L. (2013). Psychosis-proneness and the rubber hand illusion of body ownership. Psychiatry Research, 207, 45–52. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2012.11.022 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Goble, D. J., Coxon, J. P., Wenderoth, N., Van Impe, A., & Swinnen, S. P. (2009). Proprioceptive sensibility in the elderly: Degeneration, functional consequences and plastic-adaptive processes. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 33, 271–278.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Gray, N. S., Pickering, A. D., & Gray, J. A. (1994). Psychoticism and dopamine D2 binding in the basal ganglia using single photon emission tomography. Personality and Individual Differences, 17, 431–434. doi: 10.1016/0191-8869(94)90289-5 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Heed, T., Grundler, M., Rinkleib, J., Rudzik, F. H., Collins, T., Cooke, E., & O'Regan, J. K. (2011). Visual information and rubber hand embodiment differentially affect reach-to-grasp actions. Acta Psychologica, 138, 263–271.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Holle, H., McLatchie, N., Maurer, S., & Ward, J. (2011). Proprioceptive drift without illusions of ownership for rotated hands in the “rubber hand illusion” paradigm. Cognitive Neuroscience, 2, 171–178.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Holmes, N. P., Snijders, H. J., & Spence, C. (2006). Reaching with alien limbs: Visual exposure to prosthetic hands in a mirror biases proprioception without accompanying illusions of ownership. Perception and Psychophysics, 68, 685–701.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Ijsselsteijn, W. A., de Kort, Y. A. W., & Haans, A. (2006). Is this my hand I see before me? The rubber hand illusion in reality, virtual reality and mixed reality. Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 15, 455–464. doi: 10.1162/pres.15.4.455 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Jablensky, A., McGrath, J., Herrman, H., Castle, D., Gureje, O., Evans, M., & Harvey, C. (2000). Psychotic disorders in urban areas: An overview of the Study on Low Prevalence Disorders. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 34, 221–236.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Josse, F. H. J., Le, S., & Mazet, J. (2013). FactoMineR: Multivariate Exploratory Data Analysis and Data Mining with R (Version 1.25). Retrieved from
  34. Kalckert, A., & Ehrsson, H. H. (2012). Moving a rubber hand that feels like your own: A dissociation of ownership and agency. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 6, 40.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Kammers, M. P. M., Kootker, J. A., Hogendoorn, H., & Dijkerman, H. C. (2010). How many motoric body representations can we grasp? Experimental Brain Research, 202, 203–212. doi: 10.1007/s00221-009-2124-7 PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Kammers, M. P. M., Longo, M. R., Tsakiris, M., Dijkerman, H. C., & Haggard, P. (2009a). Specificity and coherence of body representations. Perception, 38, 1804–1820. doi: 10.1068/p6389 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Kammers, M. P. M., Verhagen, L., Dijkerman, H. C., Hogendoorn, H., De Vignemont, F., & Schutter, D. J. L. G. (2009b). Is this hand for real? Attenuation of the Rubber Hand Illusion by transcranial magnetic stimulation over the inferior parietal lobule. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 21, 1311–1320.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Leube, D. T., Knoblich, G., Erb, M., & Kircher, T. T. J. (2003). Observing one's hand become anarchic: An fMRI study of action identification. Consciousness and Cognition, 12, 597–608.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Lezak, M., Howieson, D., Loring, D., Hannay, H., & Fischer, J. (1995). Neuropsychological assessment (3rd ed.). New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  40. Li, L., Yao, D., & Yin, G. (2009). Spatio-temporal dynamics of visual selective attention identified by a common spatial pattern decomposition method. Brain Research, 1282, 84–94.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Longo, M. R., & Haggard, P. (2009). Sense of agency primes manual motor responses. Perception, 38, 69–78. doi: 10.1068/p6045 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Longo, M. R., Schüür, F., Kammers, M. P., Tsakiris, M., & Haggard, P. (2008). What is embodiment? A psychometric approach. Cognition, 107, 978–998.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Meehl, P. E. (1962). Schizotaxia, schizotypy, schizophrenia. American Psychologist, 17, 827–838.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Nelson, B., Fornito, A., Harrison, B., Yücel, M., Sass, L., Yung, A., & McGorry, P. (2009). A disturbed sense of self in the psychosis prodrome: Linking phenomenology and neurobiology. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 33, 807–817.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Newport, R., Pearce, R., & Preston, C. (2010). Fake hands in action: Embodiment and control of supernumerary limbs. Experimental Brain Research, 204, 385–395. doi: 10.1007/s00221-009-2104-y PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Pavani, F., Spence, C., & Driver, J. (2000). Visual capture of touch: Out-of-the-body experiences with rubber gloves. Psychological Science, 11, 353–359. doi: 10.1111/1467-9280.00270 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Peled, A., Pressman, A., Geva, A. B., & Modai, I. (2003). Somatosensory evoked potentials during a rubber-hand illusion in schizophrenia. Schizophrenia Research, 64, 157–163. doi: 10.1016/s0920-9964(03)00057-4 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Peled, A., Ritsner, M., Hirschmann, S., Geva, A. B., & Modai, I. (2000). Touch feel illusion in schizophrenic patients. Biological Psychiatry, 48, 1105–1108.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Pinheiro, J., Bates, D., DebRoy, S., Sarkar, D., & the R Development Core Team. (2013). nlme: Linear and Nonlinear Mixed Effects Models (Version R package version 3.1-110).Google Scholar
  50. Core Team, R. (2012). R: A language and environment for statistical computing (Version 2.15.2). Vienna, Austria: R Foundation for Statistical Computing. Retrieved from Google Scholar
  51. Rohde, M., Di Luca, M., & Ernst, M. O. (2011). The rubber hand illusion: Feeling of ownership and proprioceptive drift do not go hand in hand. Plos One, 6, e21659.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Rossetti, Y., Desmurget, M., & Prablanc, C. (1995). Vectorial coding of movement: Vision, proprioception, or both? Journal of Neurophysiology, 74, 457–463.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  53. Sapnas, K. G., & Zeller, R. A. (2002). Minimizing sample size when using exploratory factor analysis for measurement. Journal of Nursing Measurement, 10, 135–154. doi: 10.1891/jnum. PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Sass, L. A., & Parnas, J. (2003). Schizophrenia, consciousness, and the self. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 29, 427–444.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Shimada, S., Fukuda, K., & Hiraki, K. (2009). Rubber hand illusion under delayed visual feedback. Plos One, 4, e6185.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Shimada, S., Qi, Y., & Hiraki, K. (2010). Detection of visual feedback delay in active and passive self-body movements. Experimental Brain Research, 201, 359–364. doi: 10.1007/s00221-009-2028-6 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Sims, A. (1988). Symptoms in the mind: An introduction to descriptive psychopathology (1st ed.). Oxford: Bailliere Tindall.Google Scholar
  58. Soliman, A., O'Driscoll, G. A., Pruessner, J., Holahan, A.-L. V., Boileau, I., Gagnon, D., & Dagher, A. (2007). Stress-induced dopamine release in humans at risk of psychosis: A [11C]raclopride PET study. Neuropsychopharmacology, 33, 2033–2041.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Spence, C., Pavani, F., & Driver, J. (2000). Crossmodal links between vision and touch in covert endogenous spatial attention. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 26, 1298–1319. doi: 10.1037/0096-1523.26.4.1298 PubMedGoogle Scholar
  60. Spengler, S., von Cramon, D. Y., & Brass, M. (2009). Was it me or was it you? How the sense of agency originates from ideomotor learning revealed by fMRI. NeuroImage, 46, 290–298.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Tabachnick, B., & Fidell, L. (2007). Using multivariate statistics (Pearson International/5th ed.). Boston/London: Pearson/Allyn & Bacon.Google Scholar
  62. Tajadura-Jiménez, A., Longo, M. R., Coleman, R., & Tsakiris, M. (2012). The person in the mirror: Using the enfacement illusion to investigate the experiential structure of self-identification. Consciousness and Cognition, 21, 1725–1738. doi: 10.1016/j.concog.2012.10.004 PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Thakkar, K. N., Nichols, H. S., McIntosh, L. G., & Park, S. (2011). Disturbances in body ownership in schizophrenia: Evidence from the rubber hand illusion and case study of a spontaneous out-of-body experience. Plos One, 6, e27089. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0027089 PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Tipper, S. P., Lloyd, D., Shorland, B., Dancer, C., Howard, L. A., & McGlone, F. (1998). Vision influences tactile perception without proprioceptive orienting. Neuroreport, 9, 1741–1744. doi: 10.1097/00001756-199806010-00013 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Tsakiris, M., & Haggard, P. (2005). The rubber hand illusion revisited: Visuotactile integration and self-attribution. Journal of Experimental Psychology-Human Perception and Performance, 31, 80–91. doi: 10.1037/0096-1523.31.1.80 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Tsakiris, M., Longo, M. R., & Haggard, P. (2010). Having a body versus moving your body: Neural signatures of agency and body-ownership. Neuropsychologia, 48, 2740–2749.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Tsakiris, M., Prabhu, G., & Haggard, P. (2006). Having a body versus moving your body: How agency structures body-ownership. Consciousness and Cognition, 15, 423–432. doi: 10.1016/j.concog.2005.09.004 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Velicer, W. F., & Fava, J. L. (1998). Effects of variable and subject sampling on factor pattern recovery. Psychological Methods, 3, 231–251.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Waters, F. A. V., & Badcock, J. C. (2010). First-rank symptoms in schizophrenia: Reexamining mechanisms of self-recognition. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 36, 510–517. doi: 10.1093/schbul/sbn112 PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Psychonomic Society, Inc. 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kyran T. Graham
    • 1
    • 2
  • Mathew T. Martin-Iverson
    • 1
    • 2
  • Nicholas P. Holmes
    • 3
  • Flavie A. Waters
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Pharmacology, Pharmacy & Anaesthesiology Unit, School of Medicine and PharmacologyUniversity of Western AustraliaCrawleyAustralia
  2. 2.Statewide Department of Neurophysiology, Clinical Research Unit, North Metro Area Mental HealthGraylands HospitalPerthAustralia
  3. 3.Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics & School of Psychology & Clinical Language SciencesUniversity of ReadingBerkshireUK
  4. 4.Clinical Research Centre, North Metro Health Service Mental HealthGraylands HospitalClaremontAustralia
  5. 5.School of Psychiatry and Clinical NeurosciencesThe University of Western AustraliaCrawleyAustralia

Personalised recommendations