Research

Maze puts images on floor, where rats look

Stimuli designed to be seen

Rats and mice tend to look downward more than straight ahead. Projecting visual stimuli onto the floor of a maze allows rodents to learn behaviors faster. Credit: Burwell lab/Brown University

Visual acuity is sharpest for rats and mice when the animals are looking down. Researchers have found that rodents can learn tasks in a fourth to a sixth of the usual number of repetitions when visual stimuli are projected onto the floor of the maze rather than onto the walls. Findings are reported in the Journal of Visualized Experiments.