The way people represent and transform visuospatial information affects everyday activities including driving behavior. Mental rotation and perspective taking have recently been found to predict cognitive prerequisites for fitness-to-drive (FtD). We argue that the relationship between general cognitive status and FtD is mediated by spatial transformation skills. Here, we investigated the performance in the Mental Rotation Test (MRT) and the Perspective-Taking Test (PT) of 175 male active drivers (aged from 18 to 91 years), by administering the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) to measure their global cognitive functioning. All participants were submitted to a com-puterized driving assessment measuring resilience of attention (DT), reaction speed (RS), motor speed (MS), and perceptual speed (ATAVT). Significant results were found for the effect of global cognitive functioning on perceptual speed through the full mediation of both mental rotation and perspective-taking skills. The indirect effect of global cognitive functioning through mental rotation was only found to significantly predict resilience of attention whereas the indirect effect mediated by perspective taking only was found to significantly predict perceptual speed. Finally, the negative effect of age was found on each driving measure. Results presented here, which are limited to male drivers, suggest that general cognitive efficiency is linked to spatial mental transformation skills and, in turn, to driving-related cognitive tasks, contributing to fitness-to-drive in the lifespan.

Cognitive efficiency and fitness-to-drive along the lifespan: The mediation effect of visuospatial transformations

Tinella L.;Lopez A.;Caffo A. O.;Grattagliano I.;Bosco A.
2021

Abstract

The way people represent and transform visuospatial information affects everyday activities including driving behavior. Mental rotation and perspective taking have recently been found to predict cognitive prerequisites for fitness-to-drive (FtD). We argue that the relationship between general cognitive status and FtD is mediated by spatial transformation skills. Here, we investigated the performance in the Mental Rotation Test (MRT) and the Perspective-Taking Test (PT) of 175 male active drivers (aged from 18 to 91 years), by administering the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) to measure their global cognitive functioning. All participants were submitted to a com-puterized driving assessment measuring resilience of attention (DT), reaction speed (RS), motor speed (MS), and perceptual speed (ATAVT). Significant results were found for the effect of global cognitive functioning on perceptual speed through the full mediation of both mental rotation and perspective-taking skills. The indirect effect of global cognitive functioning through mental rotation was only found to significantly predict resilience of attention whereas the indirect effect mediated by perspective taking only was found to significantly predict perceptual speed. Finally, the negative effect of age was found on each driving measure. Results presented here, which are limited to male drivers, suggest that general cognitive efficiency is linked to spatial mental transformation skills and, in turn, to driving-related cognitive tasks, contributing to fitness-to-drive in the lifespan.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11586/371731
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