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The critical events for motor-sensory temporal recalibration

Arnold, D. H., Nancarrow, K. & Yarrow, K. (2012). The critical events for motor-sensory temporal recalibration. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 6(AUGUST), article number 235. doi: 10.3389/fnhum.2012.00235


Determining if we, or another agent, were responsible for a sensory event can require an accurate sense of timing. Our sense of appropriate timing relationships must, however, be malleable as there is a variable delay between the physical timing of an event and when sensory signals concerning that event are encoded in the brain. One dramatic demonstration of such malleability involves having people repeatedly press a button thereby causing a beep. If a delay is inserted between button presses and beeps, when it is subsequently taken away beeps can seem to precede the button presses that caused them. For this to occur it is important that people feel they were responsible for instigating the beeps. In terms of their timing, as yet it is not clear what combination of events is important for motor-sensory temporal recalibration. Here, by introducing ballistic reaches of short or longer extent before a button press, we varied the delay between the intention to act and the sensory consequence of that action. This manipulation failed to modulate recalibration magnitude. By contrast, introducing a similarly lengthened delay between button presses and consequent beeps eliminated recalibration. Thus it would seem that the critical timing relationship for motor-sensory temporal recalibration is between tactile signals relating to the completion of an action and the subsequent auditory percept.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: Copyright © 2012 Arnold, Nancarrow and Yarrow. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in other forums, provided the original authors and source are credited and subject to any copyright notices concerning any third-party graphics etc.
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Psychology
SWORD Depositor:
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