Using Visual Scene Memory Accuracy as a Predictor of Spatial Navigation Performance

Rhianna Lovegrove, Oliver Baumann*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
83 Downloads (Pure)


Spatial navigation is a fundamental cognitive function essential for daily life. Navigation skill assessment predominantly relies on self-reports, with varying accounts regarding their validity. The current study aimed to determine whether performance on an objective visual scene memory recognition ability task, could serve as a valid predictor of wayfinding navigation performance. A standardized sense of direction scale was used to compare the predictiveness of self-report with the visual recognition test for objective navigation performance. Results from multiple regression analyses indicated that better performance on the visual, but not the verbal memory task significantly predicted wayfinding ability. Visual memory performance was also a better predictor of navigation performance than participants’ self-reported sense of direction. This study therefore suggests that the assessment of visual scene memory is a promising and ecologically valid way to predict everyday practical navigation ability – in addition to or instead of via the use of self-reports.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1443-1453
Number of pages11
JournalApplied Cognitive Psychology
Issue number6
Early online date21 Sept 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2021


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