Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology; Human Computer Interaction
Jonathan W. Kelly
Humans and non-human animals must navigate their environments to survive. A recent question of interest is whether humans have the ability to combine multiple cues to navigation in a Bayesian optimal manner. The current experiments build on previous research examining the combination of cues in adult humans. These experiments further the theoretical understanding of cue combination as well as its application to real-world tasks. Experiment 1 determined that idiothetic path integration cues are not necessary for the optimal combination of path integration and piloting cues. Instead, optic flow, an allothetic path integration cue, was sufficient for the optimal combination of path integration and a geometric cue to navigation. Experiment 2 examined cue combination for two piloting cues to navigation, rather than for a piloting and path integration cue, and found that two piloting cues to navigation are not always combined in a Bayesian optimal manner. Finally, Bayesian cue combination was examined in a two-dimensional desktop environment to determine whether optimal cue integration occurs in the desktop and webpage environments we interact with on a daily basis. Results indicate further study is needed, but illustrate the importance of testing a variety of stimuli when examining cue integration. Together, the following experiments expand the current knowledge regarding how multiple cues to navigation are used together to improve spatial memory and illustrate that small differences in stimuli may have a great impact on the ability to detect optimal cue integration.
Lori Ann Sjolund
Sjolund, Lori Ann, "Bayesian integration of spatial navigation cues" (2016). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 15218.