Stroke direction asymmetry in figure drawing: Influence of handedness and reading/writing habits Academic Article uri icon


  • Recent studies suggest that asymmetries noted in certain nonlinguistic tasks used in laterality research (e.g., facial affect judgment, line bisection) may in part be influenced by prior reading/writing habits. The present study examined the relative influence of reading/writing direction and handedness on the direction of stroke movement in free-hand figure drawing. One hundred twenty right and left handed brain-intact adult readers of scripts with opposing directionality (Hindi vs Urdu) and illiterate controls were observed while drawing a tree, a hand, a house, an arrow, a pencil, and a fish. Right-handers (including right-handed illiterates) and left-to-right readers drew most figures in a left-to-right direction, whereas left handers (including left handed illiterates) and right-to-left readers more often drew the figures from right to left. These results extend previous findings and contribute to a growing body of evidence demonstrating reading scan biases in nonlinguistic perception and production tasks. It would appear that reading/writing habits cannot be ignored as a potential artifact in studies of hemisphere functional asymmetry employing nonlinguistic stimuli. 2002 Elsevier Science (USA).

published proceedings

  • Brain and Cognition

author list (cited authors)

  • Vaid, J., Singh, M., Sakhuja, T., & Gupta, G. C.

citation count

  • 46

complete list of authors

  • Vaid, Jyotsna||Singh, Maharaj||Sakhuja, Tripti||Gupta, GC

publication date

  • April 2002