%A Claus Lamm %A Herbert Bauer %A Oliver Vitouch %A Reinhard Gst?ttner %J Neuroscience Letters %T Differences in the ability to process a visuo-spatial task are reflected in event-related slow cortical potentials of human subjects. %X Recent Positron Emission (PET) and EEG studies suggest that higher ability in a cognitive task is associated with a more efficient neuronal processing of this task. However, the validity and generalizability of these studies is limited for several reasons. We investigated 20 male and 18 female human subjects with good vs. poor spatial ability performing a visuo-spatial task (cube test). Processing-related slow event-related potentials were recorded via 22 electrodes, evenly distributed over the scalp. Significant differences between good and poor performers were found in both sexes: Poor subjects showed higher activity in the parietal region, and their topography was more extended into fronto-central regions. Since the amount and topography of brain activity may vary considerably depending on subjects' ability, we conclude that careful (experimental) control of task-specific ability of subjects is mandatory for cognitive neuroscience studies. %K neuronal efficiency; ability; spatial cognition; individualdifferences; event-related potentials; slow potentials;human cognition; EEG; ERP; SPT; psychophysiology %P 137-140 %V 269 %D 1999 %L cogprints117