Dataset: Encountering an emotional landmark on the route for a better spatial memory: what matters, valence or arousal?

Published: 24 April 2023| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/zkd4gxvgss.1
Teophile Rasse


The objective of the current study was to better clarify the effect of the valence and arousal dimensions of landmarks encountered during a virtual path on spatial memory, by assessing effective survey knowledge in addition to route knowledge. It also aimed to extend the previous results on the influence of emotional landmarks on spatial memory to more complex and larger environmental space configurations. Participants were asked to watch a movie of a walk in a large urban virtual environment with landmarks (consisting of a billboard displaying an emotionally laden image) that differed in terms of arousal and valence across conditions (high-arousal-positive; low-arousal-positive; high-arousal-negative; low-arousal-negative). After watching the route, participant were asked to complete the PANAS questionnaire assessing their mood and completed an image recognition task. Then their route knowledge was assessed through a direction recall task, and their survey knowledge by asking them to plot the position of each landmark encountered during the route on a map. After the completion of these tasks, the emotional images seen during the route were presented again one by one and participants were asked to rate their valence and arousal using the self-assessment manikin scale (SAM). Our hypotheses were that the presence of positive landmarks should improve route knowledge and that the interplay between the valence and level of arousal of landmarks should impact survey knowledge accuracy. Results showed that the presence of positive landmarks benefited route knowledge, whereas high arousing ones impaired it. However, no effect of the landmarks´ valence and arousal was observed on survey knowledge accuracy. Description of the content of data files: Data Analysis R script.R : script of the analyses performed DFPANASshortSN.xlsx: Excel file containing the participants' data for the PANAS questionnaire. DFEvalAffect3SN.xlsx: Excel file containing the participants' Valence and arousal ratings of the emotional images used as landmarks. DFreco_SN.xlsx: Excel file containing the participants' data for the image recognition task. DFdir2SN.xlsx: Excel file containing the participants' data for the directions recall task. Excel files containing the landmark positions (X & Y values) indicated by the participants during the landmark positioning tasks (X=depV1 & Y=depV2) and the landmarks' real position in the virtual environement (X=indepV1 Y=indepV2): dataNegEmoin.xlsx -> For the participants in the low-arousal-negative condition. dataPosEplus.xlsx: -> For the participants in the high-arousal-positive condition. dataNegEplus.xlsx: -> For the participants in the high-arousal-negative condition. dataPosEmoin.xlsx: ->For the participants in the low-arousal-positive condition.



Universite de Paris


Wayfinding, Spatial Cognition, Spatial Memory, Emotion, Landmark Orientation