Establishing Line Tracing on a Touch Monitor as a Basic Drawing Skill in Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)

  • Iver H. Iversen
  • Tetsuro Matsuzawa


Using written symbols is essential for human communication. Effective written communication requires that each subject can read and write or produce the visual symbols. Therefore, considerable worldwide educational efforts are expended to teach children symbols such as letters, signs, and numbers. Several studies of human-animal communication have established that nonhuman subjects can also be taught to discriminate visual symbols presented by humans. Of particular interest is the fact that several studies have shown that chimpanzees can learn to discriminate complex lexigrams (Rumbaugh 1977; Savage-Rumbaugh 1986; Tomonaga and Matsuzawa 1992) by pointing to them or moving them about (Premack 1976) in an appropriate manner. Chimpanzees have also been trained to compose symbols from their elements (Fujita and Matsuzawa 1990) and to produce signs with their fingers (Gardner and Gardner 1978).


Visual Feedback Probe Trial Movement Path Baseline Trial Sorting Task 
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Copyright information

© Springer 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Iver H. Iversen
    • 1
  • Tetsuro Matsuzawa
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of North FloridaJacksonvilleUSA
  2. 2.Primate Research InstituteKyoto UniversityInuyama, AichiJapan

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