Sunday, August 14, 2011

A simple test to discover your inner mathematician.

A new study from the John Hopkins University shows that performance on Approximate Number System (ANS) test is a good predictor for people's math abilities at school. ANS is not a uniquely human trait; it is also present in other mammals including rats. Click on the link ( leading to a NYT page) to test your own primordial number sense. You'll see something like this:

Back to the study. Here's an excerpt from the abstract:

we measured the ANS acuity of 200 3- to 5-year-old children using a task that did not also require symbol use or arithmetic calculation. We also measured children’s math ability and vocabulary size prior to the onset of formal math instruction. We found that children’s ANS acuity correlated with their math ability, even when age and verbal skills were controlled for.

tags: education, information, science, biology, control, psychology, book

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