Age differences in online processing of video: an eye movement study

Child Dev. 2012 Mar-Apr;83(2):497-507. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.2011.01719.x. Epub 2012 Jan 30.


Eye movements were recorded while sixty-two 1-year-olds, 4-year-olds, and adults watched television. Of interest was the extent to which viewers looked at the same place at the same time as their peers because high similarity across viewers suggests systematic viewing driven by comprehension processes. Similarity of gaze location increased with age. This was particularly true immediately following a cut to a new scene, partly because older viewers (but not infants) tended to fixate the center of the screen following a cut. Conversely, infants appear to require several seconds to orient to a new scene. Results are interpreted in the context of developing attention skills. Findings have implications for the extent to which infants comprehend and learn from commercial video.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Attention*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Comprehension
  • Eye Movements*
  • Female
  • Fixation, Ocular*
  • Humans
  • Imitative Behavior*
  • Infant
  • Infant Behavior*
  • Male
  • Orientation*
  • Social Behavior*
  • Television*
  • Young Adult