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A large body of research has suggested that localisation of the hand in external space relies on distorted representations of the hand. We developed a paradigm for measuring implicit perceptual maps of the hand (Longo & Haggard, 2010, Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 107, 11727-11732), which show systematic deviation from actual hand shape, including overestimation of hand width and underestimation of finger length. Recently, Coelho and Gonzalez (in press, Psychol Res) reported sex differences in these perceptual hand maps, with women showing greater overestimation of hand width, but less underestimation of finger length than men. In the current study, I conducted a meta-analysis of 19 experiments using this paradigm by myself and my colleagues. The results replicated the sex differences reported by Coelho and Gonzalez. Importantly, however, these sex differences were not apparent when actual hand size was included as a covariate in analyses, suggesting that they may, at least in part, be due to women having smaller hands on average than men.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Acta psychologica
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The interference of one perceptual stimulus with another causing a decrease or lessening in perceptual effectiveness.
A perceptual phenomenon used by Gestalt psychologists to demonstrate that events in one part of the perceptual field may affect perception in another part.
A quantitative method of combining the results of independent studies (usually drawn from the published literature) and synthesizing summaries and conclusions which may be used to evaluate therapeutic effectiveness, plan new studies, etc., with application chiefly in the areas of research and medicine.
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