The direction, latency, and form of the 1- and 2-month-old human infant’s saccadic eye movements toward peripheral targets were investigated. Infants of both ages reliably executed a directionally appropriate first saccade toward a peripheral target introduced as far as 30 deg from the line of sight along the horizontal and both diagonal axes, but only to 10 deg along the vertical axis. The presence of a second target in the central visual field reduced the probability of peripheral target localization. A significant inverse relation was found between target distance from the line of sight and probability of initiating a directionally appropriate saccade. Electro-oculography revealed that latency to first saccade, although highly variable, was less than 500 msec on a significant proportion of trials. Unlike the adult, the first saccade to target was grossly hypometric and was followed by one or more saccades of approximately equal amplitude to the first.
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This research was partially supported by Grant HD-05027 to the Institute of Child Development and by Grants HD-01136 and NSF P2BI389 to the Center for Research m Human Learning.
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Aslin, R.N., Salapatek, P. Saccadic localization of visual targets by the very young human infant. Perception & Psychophysics 17, 293–302 (1975). https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03203214
- Target Distance
- Peripheral Target
- Saccade Amplitude
- Saccadic System
- Intersaccade Interval