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ERIC Number: EJ1007420
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Mar
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0012-1649
Dax Gets the Nod: Toddlers Detect and Use Social Cues to Evaluate Testimony
Fusaro, Maria; Harris, Paul L.
Developmental Psychology, v49 n3 p514-522 Mar 2013
Children ages 18 and 24 months were assessed for the ability to understand and learn from an adult's nonverbal expression of agreement and disagreement with a speaker's claims. In one type of communicative exchange, a speaker made 2 different claims about the identity or location of an object. The hearer nodded her head in agreement with one claim and shook her head in disagreement with the other claim. In a second type of exchange, the speaker asked 2 different questions about the identity or location of an object. The hearer nodded her head in response to one question and shook her head in response to the other. The 24-month-olds grasped the implication of these gestural responses, by inferring the correct name or location of the object. The 18-month-olds showed a limited grasp of their implications. Thus, in learning from others' testimony, toddlers focus not only on the claims of a single speaker but also on whether that information is accepted or rejected by another hearer. In particular, they detect and act on social cues of assent and dissent. (Contains 1 table, 1 figure and 3 footnotes.)
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Preschool Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Massachusetts