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The scaling behavior of hand motions reveals self-organization during an executive function task

Author

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  • Anastas, Jason R.
  • Stephen, Damian G.
  • Dixon, James A.

Abstract

Recent approaches to cognition explain cognitive phenomena in terms of interaction-dominant dynamics. In the current experiment, we extend this approach to executive function, a construct used to describe flexible, goal-oriented behavior. Participants were asked to perform a widely used executive function task, card sorting, under two conditions. In one condition, participants were given a rule with which to sort the cards. In the other condition, participants had to induce the rule from experimenter feedback. The motion of each participant’s hand was tracked during the sorting task. Detrended fluctuation analysis was performed on the inter-point time series using a windowing strategy to capture changes over each trial. For participants in the induction condition, the Hurst exponent sharply increased and then decreased. The Hurst exponents for the explicit condition did not show this pattern. Our results suggest that executive function may be understood in terms of changes in stability that arise from interaction-dominant dynamics.

Suggested Citation

  • Anastas, Jason R. & Stephen, Damian G. & Dixon, James A., 2011. "The scaling behavior of hand motions reveals self-organization during an executive function task," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 390(9), pages 1539-1545.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:phsmap:v:390:y:2011:i:9:p:1539-1545
    DOI: 10.1016/j.physa.2010.11.038
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    Cited by:

    1. Almurad, Zainy M.H. & Delignières, Didier, 2016. "Evenly spacing in Detrended Fluctuation Analysis," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 451(C), pages 63-69.

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