Auditory-visual responsiveness in full-term and preterm infants

Katharine R. Lawson, al et al

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Compared older preterm and full-term infants in their response to objects in a dynamic multimodal context. In Study I, 67 12-wk-old full-term infants and 29 preterm infants (mean age 90 days) served as Ss. After familiarization with a silent moving object, full-term Ss recognized the object when it was stationary. When sound accompanied the moving object during familiarization, full-term Ss showed increased attention to the object but no subsequent recognition of that object. Neither high- nor low-risk preterms, at a comparable conceptional age, recognized the objects under any condition, but the low-risk preterms did show greater attention to the moving objects with sound. In Study II, 43 preterm Ss were tested approximately 6 mo after their estimated term date. The performance of the low-risk preterms was the same as that of full-terms; that is, through differential responding, they demonstrated association of an object and sound. In contrast, the high-risk preterms showed no differential looking. Thus both low- and high-risk preterms showed less differential responding than did normal full-terms at 3 mo, but at 6 mo only the high-risk preterms were different from the full-terms. Results suggest that the high-risk preterms are at a disadvantage for learning about the dynamic and multimodal aspects of their environment. (13 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)120-127
Number of pages8
JournalDevelopmental Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1984


  • auditory/visual responsiveness, full-term vs high- vs low-risk preterm infants, 60-mo longitudinal study

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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