ERIC Number: EJ1049938
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 50
Inhibitory Control Efficiency in a Piaget-Like Class-Inclusion Task in School-Age Children and Adults: A Developmental Negative Priming Study
Borst, G.; Poirel, N.; Pineau, A.; Cassotti, M.; Houdé, O.
Developmental Psychology, v49 n7 p1366-1374 Jul 2013
Most children under 7 years of age presented with 10 daisies and 2 roses fail to indicate that there are more flowers than daisies. Instead of the appropriate comparison of the relative numerosities of the superordinate class (flowers) to its subordinate class (daisies), they perform a direct perceptual comparison of the extensions of the 2 subordinate classes (daisies vs. roses). In our experiment, we investigated whether increasing efficiency in solving the Piagetian class-inclusion task is related to increasing efficiency in the ability to resist (inhibit) this direct comparison of the subordinate classes' extensions. Ten-year-old and young adult participants performed a computerized priming version of a Piaget-like class-inclusion task. The experimental design was such that the misleading perceptual strategy to inhibit on the prime (in which a superordinate class had to be compared with a subordinate class) became a congruent strategy to activate on the probe (in which the two subordinate classes' extensions were directly compared). We found a negative priming effect of 291 ms in children and 129 ms in adults. These results provide evidence for the first time (a) that adults still need to inhibit the comparison of the subordinate classes' extensions in class-inclusion tasks and (b) that the ability to inhibit this heuristic increases with age (resulting in a lower executive cost). Taken together, these findings provide additional support for the neo-Piagetian approach of cognitive development that suggests that the acquisition of increasingly complex knowledge is based on the ability to resist (inhibit) heuristics and previously acquired knowledge.
Descriptors: Inhibition, Efficiency, Children, Priming, Piagetian Theory, Age Differences, Cognitive Development, Grade 4, Elementary School Students, Reaction Time, Young Adults, Statistical Analysis, Foreign Countries
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 4; Intermediate Grades; Elementary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: France