Document Type

Article - postprint


Psychology (Pitzer)

Publication Date



Sex differences, Infants, Mental rotation


A sex difference on mental-rotation tasks has been demonstrated repeatedly, but not in children less than 4 years of age. To demonstrate mental rotation in human infants, we habituated 5-month-old infants to an object revolving through a 240° angle. In successive test trials, infants saw the habituation object or its mirror image revolving through a previously unseen 120° angle. Only the male infants appeared to recognize the familiar object from the new perspective, a feat requiring mental rotation. These data provide evidence for a sex difference in mental rotation of an object through three-dimensional space, consistently seen in adult populations.


The content of this open-access post-print research report is the same as that contained in the published article with the following reference:

Moore, D. S. & Johnson, S. P. (2008). Mental rotation in human infants: A sex difference. Psychological Science, 19, 1063 – 1066.

Rights Information

© 2008 Association for Psychological Science

Included in

Psychology Commons