Journal Article

Subitizing, Magnitude Representation, and Magnitude Retrieval in Deaf and Hearing Adults

Rebecca Bull, Gary Blatto-Vallee and Megan Fabich

in The Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education

Volume 11, issue 3, pages 289-302
ISSN: 1081-4159
Published online April 2006 | e-ISSN: 1465-7325 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/deafed/enj038
Subitizing, Magnitude Representation, and Magnitude Retrieval in Deaf and Hearing Adults

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This study examines basic number processing (subitizing, automaticity, and magnitude representation) as the possible underpinning of mathematical difficulties often evidenced in deaf adults. Hearing and deaf participants completed tasks to assess the automaticity with which magnitude information was activated and retrieved from long-term memory (using a Stroop-like paradigm to assess congruity effects), the representational format of magnitude information (by analysis of distance and Spatial Numerical Association of Response Codes effects), and the ability to rapidly enumerate small sets (subitizing). Both groups showed distance effects taken to indicate the use of a visual–spatial analog number line representing approximate quantity. Furthermore, both groups showed similar patterns of performance on the subitizing tasks and showed similar amounts of interference in an analysis of congruity effects. This is taken as evidence against the notion that idiosyncratic differences in basic number processing account for mathematical difficulties experienced by deaf individuals.

Journal Article.  6870 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Education ; Linguistics ; Teaching of Specific Groups and Special Educational Needs

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