Vigilance paradigm for preschool children used to relate vigilance behavior to IQ and prenatal exposure to alcohol

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Perceptual and Motor Skills




A methodology for investigating vigilance behavior in preschool children was developed. The administration of the task was adapted to young children and a scoring system was devised to adjust for the higher level of random responding found in this sample of preschoolers. 28 3- and 4-yr.-olds were given the Stanford-Biner Intelligence Test and a 12-min. vigilance task. The children, drawn from a sample used in a larger study, were the offspring of three groups of mothers: recovered alcoholics who drank during pregnancy, recovered alcoholics who did not drink during pregnancy, and nonalcoholics who drank litt or nothing during pregnancy. A significant correlation was found between the number of correct responses on the vigilance task and IQ (r26 = . 53, p less than .01). The conclusions that can be drawn regarding the relationship of vigilance to maternal alcohol use (chi 2 = 4.82, p less than .09) are limited by small sample size.