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ERIC Number: ED139541
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1976-Dec-17
Reference Count: 0
The Development of Imitation in Children 1-3 Years Old. Final Report.
McCall, Robert B.; And Others
Five studies investigated the development of imitation in children 1-3 years old. Results indicated that children as young as 12 months possess the cognitive capability of translating a perception of an action into their own behavior, but imitation varies as actions requiring direct social commerce with the examiner are imitated less frequently than simple motor behaviors with objects. Moreover, imitation depends upon the child's cognitive development. For example, coordinated sequences of behaviors are not imitated until entity-entity relationships are possible, and deferred imitation requires the advent of symbolic relations. There is no evidence in this research for a trait of imitativeness, at least not until symbolic relations are involved. While children under 2 years of age are not facile at imitating sequences of behaviors or delaying performance a short time after modeling, older toddlers will imitate televised sequences even after a 24-hour delay. Whereas socially extroverted and fearless children imitate live models more than shy children, TV imitation des not appear to be related to temperament, home TV-viewing habits, or parental education. Finally, reciprocal imitation games between parent or peer and the infant may promote the infant's social cognition of influencing another person at a distance. (Author/MS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC. Office of Research Grants.
Authoring Institution: N/A