This chapter presents a review of environment and spatial learning in individuals with Down syndrome (DS). Some theoretical background on environment representation is introduced, describing the role of input sources and recall modalities, and how individual cognitive abilities relate to environment representation. The review shows that most studies have focused on navigation and wayfinding abilities using virtual environments with different environment features (e.g., regular or irregular, landmark positions along a path). Other studies have examined real movement in controlled settings. Overall, research indicates that individuals with DS are able to acquire egocentric knowledge (i.e. from the person's viewpoint) expressed by their ability to learn routes, though they may require more practice than age-matched typically-developing children or other atypical populations; and they learn as well as controls from actually completing sequences of moves or reaching clearly-identified places. Individuals with DS show poor allocentric (i.e., viewpoint-independent) knowledge compared to controls, however, expressed by the ability to find a shortcut or using external features of the environment to reach places. Other studies show that individuals with DS can also use indirect sources for environment learning, such as verbal descriptions of the environment. Some evidence suggests that individual cognitive abilities, such as non-verbal skills, are related to spatial performance, and that the visuo-spatial skills of individual with DS can be improved. This review outlines what is currently known about environment and spatial learning in individuals with DS, encompassing the theoretical background and practical implications.

Environment learning in individuals with Down syndrome

Meneghetti C.
;
Toffalini E.;Carretti B.;Lanfranchi S.
2019

Abstract

This chapter presents a review of environment and spatial learning in individuals with Down syndrome (DS). Some theoretical background on environment representation is introduced, describing the role of input sources and recall modalities, and how individual cognitive abilities relate to environment representation. The review shows that most studies have focused on navigation and wayfinding abilities using virtual environments with different environment features (e.g., regular or irregular, landmark positions along a path). Other studies have examined real movement in controlled settings. Overall, research indicates that individuals with DS are able to acquire egocentric knowledge (i.e. from the person's viewpoint) expressed by their ability to learn routes, though they may require more practice than age-matched typically-developing children or other atypical populations; and they learn as well as controls from actually completing sequences of moves or reaching clearly-identified places. Individuals with DS show poor allocentric (i.e., viewpoint-independent) knowledge compared to controls, however, expressed by the ability to find a shortcut or using external features of the environment to reach places. Other studies show that individuals with DS can also use indirect sources for environment learning, such as verbal descriptions of the environment. Some evidence suggests that individual cognitive abilities, such as non-verbal skills, are related to spatial performance, and that the visuo-spatial skills of individual with DS can be improved. This review outlines what is currently known about environment and spatial learning in individuals with DS, encompassing the theoretical background and practical implications.
International Review of Research in Developmental Disabilities
978-0-12-818454-7
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3306752
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