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Circle drawing does not exhibit auditory-motor synchronization
Journal of Motor Behavior
  • Breanna E. Studenka, Utah State University
  • Howard N. Zelaznik, Purdue University
Document Type
Taylor & Francis
Publication Date

Differences in timing control processes between tapping and circle drawing have been extensively documented during continuation timing. Differences between event and emergent control processes have also been documented for synchronization timing using emergent tasks that have minimal event-related information. However, it is not known whether the original circle-drawing task also behaves differently than tapping during synchronization. In this experiment, 10 participants performed a table-tapping and a continuous circle-drawing task to an auditory metronome. Synchronization performance was assessed via the value and variability of asynchronies. Synchronization was substantially more difficult in circle drawing than in tapping. Participants drawing timed circles exhibited drift in synchronization error and did not maintain a consistent phase relationship with the metronome. An analysis of temporal anchoring revealed that timing to the timing target was not more accurate than timing to other locations on the circle trajectory. The authors conclude that participants were not able to synchronize movement with metronome tones in the circle-drawing task despite other findings that cyclical tasks do exhibit auditory motor synchronization, because the circle-drawing task is unique and absent of event and cycle position information.

Citation Information
Studenka, B. E. & Zelaznik, H. N. (2011b). Circle drawing does not exhibit auditory-motor synchronization. Journal of Motor Behavior, 43, 185-191. doi:10.1080/00222895.2011.555796