Executive functioning and imitation

Increasing working memory load facilitates behavioural imitation

Matthijs L. van Leeuwen, Rick B. van Baaren, Douglas Martin, Ap Dijksterhuis, Harold Bekkering

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

29 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

If perceptual and bodily states are closely linked and if perceiving action automatically leads to corresponding activations in one's own motor system, then why do not we imitate all the time? There is evidence suggesting that executive functioning (EF) may play a moderating role in inhibiting overt imitation [e.g. Luria, A. R. (1966). Higher cortical functions in man. New York: Basic Books]. In an experiment we tested this idea. 48 participants received either a high or low working memory (WM) load and were instructed to respond to either a finger cue or spatial cue with a finger movement. Results indicate that occupying WM facilitates reaction times to finger cues while responses to simple spatial cues are unchanged. The findings suggest that imitation is indeed a dominant response and EF is needed to inhibit the spontaneous tendency to imitate. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Article number-
Pages (from-to)3265-3270
Number of pages6
JournalNeuropsychologia
Volume47
Issue number14
Early online date16 Jun 2009
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2009

Keywords

  • Inhibition
  • Perception-action
  • Mimicry
  • Motor control
  • Response Tendencies
  • Frontal lobes
  • Perception
  • Recognition
  • Movements
  • Perception–action

Cite this

Executive functioning and imitation : Increasing working memory load facilitates behavioural imitation . / van Leeuwen, Matthijs L.; van Baaren, Rick B.; Martin, Douglas; Dijksterhuis, Ap; Bekkering, Harold.

In: Neuropsychologia, Vol. 47, No. 14, -, 12.2009, p. 3265-3270.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

van Leeuwen, Matthijs L. ; van Baaren, Rick B. ; Martin, Douglas ; Dijksterhuis, Ap ; Bekkering, Harold. / Executive functioning and imitation : Increasing working memory load facilitates behavioural imitation . In: Neuropsychologia. 2009 ; Vol. 47, No. 14. pp. 3265-3270.
@article{b52ac60c23d542f5a756ca7d3caf53c9,
title = "Executive functioning and imitation: Increasing working memory load facilitates behavioural imitation",
abstract = "If perceptual and bodily states are closely linked and if perceiving action automatically leads to corresponding activations in one's own motor system, then why do not we imitate all the time? There is evidence suggesting that executive functioning (EF) may play a moderating role in inhibiting overt imitation [e.g. Luria, A. R. (1966). Higher cortical functions in man. New York: Basic Books]. In an experiment we tested this idea. 48 participants received either a high or low working memory (WM) load and were instructed to respond to either a finger cue or spatial cue with a finger movement. Results indicate that occupying WM facilitates reaction times to finger cues while responses to simple spatial cues are unchanged. The findings suggest that imitation is indeed a dominant response and EF is needed to inhibit the spontaneous tendency to imitate. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.",
keywords = "Inhibition, Perception-action, Mimicry, Motor control, Response Tendencies, Frontal lobes, Perception, Recognition, Movements, Perception–action",
author = "{van Leeuwen}, {Matthijs L.} and {van Baaren}, {Rick B.} and Douglas Martin and Ap Dijksterhuis and Harold Bekkering",
year = "2009",
month = "12",
doi = "10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2009.06.005",
language = "English",
volume = "47",
pages = "3265--3270",
journal = "Neuropsychologia",
issn = "0028-3932",
publisher = "Elsevier Limited",
number = "14",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Executive functioning and imitation

T2 - Increasing working memory load facilitates behavioural imitation

AU - van Leeuwen, Matthijs L.

AU - van Baaren, Rick B.

AU - Martin, Douglas

AU - Dijksterhuis, Ap

AU - Bekkering, Harold

PY - 2009/12

Y1 - 2009/12

N2 - If perceptual and bodily states are closely linked and if perceiving action automatically leads to corresponding activations in one's own motor system, then why do not we imitate all the time? There is evidence suggesting that executive functioning (EF) may play a moderating role in inhibiting overt imitation [e.g. Luria, A. R. (1966). Higher cortical functions in man. New York: Basic Books]. In an experiment we tested this idea. 48 participants received either a high or low working memory (WM) load and were instructed to respond to either a finger cue or spatial cue with a finger movement. Results indicate that occupying WM facilitates reaction times to finger cues while responses to simple spatial cues are unchanged. The findings suggest that imitation is indeed a dominant response and EF is needed to inhibit the spontaneous tendency to imitate. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

AB - If perceptual and bodily states are closely linked and if perceiving action automatically leads to corresponding activations in one's own motor system, then why do not we imitate all the time? There is evidence suggesting that executive functioning (EF) may play a moderating role in inhibiting overt imitation [e.g. Luria, A. R. (1966). Higher cortical functions in man. New York: Basic Books]. In an experiment we tested this idea. 48 participants received either a high or low working memory (WM) load and were instructed to respond to either a finger cue or spatial cue with a finger movement. Results indicate that occupying WM facilitates reaction times to finger cues while responses to simple spatial cues are unchanged. The findings suggest that imitation is indeed a dominant response and EF is needed to inhibit the spontaneous tendency to imitate. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

KW - Inhibition

KW - Perception-action

KW - Mimicry

KW - Motor control

KW - Response Tendencies

KW - Frontal lobes

KW - Perception

KW - Recognition

KW - Movements

KW - Perception–action

U2 - 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2009.06.005

DO - 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2009.06.005

M3 - Article

VL - 47

SP - 3265

EP - 3270

JO - Neuropsychologia

JF - Neuropsychologia

SN - 0028-3932

IS - 14

M1 - -

ER -