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ERIC Number: EJ1055874
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Mar
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 36
ISSN: ISSN-0012-1649
The Development of Categorization: Effects of Classification and Inference Training on Category Representation
Deng, Wei; Sloutsky, Vladimir M.
Developmental Psychology, v51 n3 p392-405 Mar 2015
Does category representation change in the course of development? And if so, how and why? The current study attempted to answer these questions by examining category learning and category representation. In Experiment 1, 4-year-olds, 6-year-olds, and adults were trained with either a classification task or an inference task and their categorization performance and memory for items were tested. Adults and 6-year-olds exhibited an important asymmetry: they relied on a single deterministic feature during classification training, but not during inference training. In contrast, regardless of the training condition, 4-year-olds relied on multiple probabilistic features. In Experiment 2, 4-year-olds were presented with classification training and their attention was explicitly directed to the deterministic feature. Under this condition, their categorization performance was similar to that of older participants in Experiment 1, yet their memory performance pointed to a similarity-based representation, which was similar to that of 4-year-olds in Experiment 1. These results are discussed in relation to theories of categorization and the role of selective attention in the development of category learning.
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation; Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) (NIH)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Ohio
IES Grant or Contract Numbers: BCS-1323963|R01HD078545