Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Children's drawing ability is more strongly determined by genes than by the family environment or deliberate practice

Drawing as a Window Onto Expertise. Rebecca Chamberlain. Current Directions in Psychological Science, https://doi.org/10.1177/0963721418797301

Abstract: The ability to draw is a uniquely human activity, ubiquitous in childhood but seldom performed at expert levels in adulthood. Relative to other domains of expertise (chess, music, sport), drawing is understudied, and yet because it is a universal developmental ability mastered by so few, it provides an ideal test bed for competing theories of expertise. In this review, three strands of active research and debate in the field of expertise will be considered in relation to representational drawing ability: (a) the characterization of expertise in relation to altered visual attention and memory, (b) the relative roles of personality traits and cognitive abilities, and (c) the interaction between genes and environment in the development of expertise. The study of representational drawing sheds new light on these three strands and provides rich avenues for further research in this domain.

Keywords: expertise, drawing, individual differences, attention, visual memory