Motor control as the control of perception

Richard S. Marken, Warren Mansell, Zahra Khatib

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    This paper describes a test of Perceptual Control Theory (PCT), which views motor control as part of a process of controlling perceptual inputs rather than motor outputs. Sixteen undergraduate students (M age = 19.9 yr.) were asked to control one of three diff erent perceptual aspects of an animated display-a shape, a motion or a sequence-using the same motor output, a key press. Animation rate was varied while quality of control was measured in terms of the proportion of time that the perception was maintained in the goal state. The results showed that increased animation rate made it hardest to control the more complex perceptions (motion and sequence) even though the same output was used to control all perceptions. This result is consistent with PCT, which predicts that the temporal constraints on control are ultimately a function of the type of perception controlled rather than the type of output used to control it. © Perceptual & Motor Skills 2013.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)236-247
    Number of pages11
    JournalPerceptual and Motor Skills
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013


    Dive into the research topics of 'Motor control as the control of perception'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this