The Comparison of Mental Rotation Performances and Academic Achievements of Art, Foreign Languages, Computer-Instructional Technology Students and Elite Karate Athletes
Introduction and Objective: Mental rotation (MR) is defined as the ability to imagine how an object would look if rotated away from the plane or depth in which it is actually presented. In short MR performance is the ability to rotate three-dimensional objects using the imagination. As the ability to generate, retrieve, maintain, and manipulate visual–spatial information, MR plays a critical role throughout education and sport. In this aspect our objective in this study was to compare MR performances between students of art, foreign languages (FL),computer-instructional technologies (CIT) and elite karate athletes (EKA).
Methods: In the computer-based MR test, the image files of the library "Mental Rotation Stimulus Library" were used with the written permission of the author. and body mass index (BMI) was recorded by a Bioelectrical Impedance Analyzer device (TANITA, TBF300 Japan).The One Way ANOVA test was used to compare continuous variables between groups. SPSS v.24 program was used for statistical analyzes.
A total of 144 participants composed of 79 males and 65 females volunteered in the context of the study. Mean age, weight, height, body mass index (BMI) of the participants were 22.42.71 years, 68.0515.28 kg., 171.339.22 cm. and21.894.52 kg/m2respectively. Eighty six (46 male, 40female) university students and thirty sedantary (17 male, 13 female) who are not engaged in sports and twenty nine (17 male, 12female) EKA were included in the study after being informed about the study and obtaining their consents. The nonathlete university students were selected from the faculties of arts, CIT and FL of Uludağ University.
Results: Comparing the academic achievements with the EKA group and art, CIT, EKA and control groups; it was observed that all the groups are better than EKA.However, no significant difference was found between elite karate athletes and all groups in MR performances.The correct numbers and durations of the MR test are statistically similar to other groups, even though the academic achievement of the athletes is low.
Conclusion: In conclusion, it is known that academic achievement can effects MR performance positively. Similarly, the importance of mental rotation performance in terms of sporting success also explains the similarity of the performance in MR between the groups.
Keywords: MentaL Rotation, Sports, Academic Achievement, Education