ERIC Number: ED338402
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Computer Simulated Child Behavior as an Elicitor of Adult Reactions.
Bugental, Daphne Blunt; Lewis, Jeffrey Clayton
A study used a paradigm in which adults believed they were teaching a simple video game to an unseen child. In fact, the adults saw computer-generated responses that were modeled on actual child behavior. Subjects were 160 mothers, who were randomly assigned to view simulations of either responsive or unresponsive behavior. The simulations of responsive behavior showed steady improvement during the game, while simulations of unresponsive behavior involved random errors. The total number of errors was the same for both types of simulations. Adults could provide feedback by giving "happy" or "mad face" computer responses, half at any time during the game, and half at the end. Adults were videotaped during the experiment. Analysis of the tapes revealed that simulations of unresponsive behavior were viewed as reflecting low improvement or qualified improvement on the part of the children. Adults used more "mad face" responses and fewer "happy faces" with simulations of unresponsive behavior than with simulations of responsive behavior. Individual beliefs about parenting qualified responses: more negative responses came from parents with low perceived control as parents. Nine references and two charts are appended. (SAK)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Seattle, WA, April 18-20, 1991).