Naming and grasping common objects: a priming study Academic Article uri icon


  • This study examined the effects of priming on response latency when participants named and/or grasped common objects. A repetition-priming paradigm was used. An object was presented during a study phase and then was presented again during testing along with other objects that had not been seen before. In experiment 1, the studied objects were either named twice or grasped twice, named first and then grasped, or grasped first and then named. We found a strong priming effect (i.e., decreased latency) when naming was preceded by naming, as well as by grasping, but no priming effect when grasping was preceded by either naming or grasping. In experiment 2, we investigated the effects of priming in naming-naming and grasping-grasping paradigms, with and without a change in object orientation from study to test. As expected, we found significant priming of naming by naming, and the effect was not reduced by orientation change. Again, we found no evidence of priming in grasping. Experiment 3 was designed to examine how different kinds of perceptual and visuomotor processing (naming, orientation matching, orientation discrimination, simple observation, and grasping) during the study phase affect naming at a later test phase. We found significant priming of naming following all study conditions. Notably, the effect differed depending on how much "perceptual" processing was involved in the study phase. The results clearly indicate that perceptual/semantic processing is more dependent on memory than visuomotor processing, which instead relies more on moment-to-moment computations.


publication date

  • November 1, 2004