Controlo inibitório, representação de magnitude e aquisição de competências matemáticas no pré-escolar

  • Rita Matos Pires Cavaglià (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


Introduction: Inhibitory control and magnitude representation have been identified as key functions for the development of numerical and arithmetic skills. However, recent research suggests that the association between magnitude representation tasks, namely dot comparison, and mathematical acquisition is in fact an artefact of the inhibitory control demands of the dot comparison task’s incongruent trials. The aim of this study was to study how magnitude assessment and executive functions that underly mathematics achievement relate to the success in a number sense task.Methodology: The performance of 82 preschool children, aged 4 to 5 years, on magnitude representation, inhibitory control and early mathematical knowledge tasks was evaluated. To determine the association between performance in these tasks,correlation analyzes were performed.Results: A correlation was observed between performance in a magnitude representation task and early mathematical abilities task (r = −.49), however no statistically significant correlations were found between inhibitory control and 1)mathematical abilities, 2) performance in the magnitude representation task’s incongruent trials.Conclusions: Confirming the association between magnitude representation and mathematical abilities may be relevant for the creation of assessment instruments and intervention programs that incorporate non-symbolic measures. Given the relevance of mathematics in modern societies, it is important to accumulate research on the cognitive functions that most influence the acquisition of math skills and how this link expresses, particularly during kindergarten years.
Date of Award21 May 2020
Original languagePortuguese
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorFilipa Ribeiro (Supervisor)


  • Inhibitory control
  • Magnitude representation
  • Mathematics
  • Sentido de número
  • Number sense


  • Mestrado em Neuropsicologia

Cite this