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ERIC Number: EJ1119230
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0009-3920
Young Children Detect and Avoid Logically Inconsistent Sources: The Importance of Communicative Context and Executive Function
Doebel, Sabine; Rowell, Shaina F.; Koenig, Melissa A.
Child Development, v87 n6 p1956-1970 Nov-Dec 2016
The reported research tested the hypothesis that young children detect logical inconsistency in communicative contexts that support the evaluation of speakers' epistemic reliability. In two experiments (N = 194), 3- to 5-year-olds were presented with two speakers who expressed logically consistent or inconsistent claims. Three-year-olds failed to detect inconsistencies (Experiment 1), 4-year-olds detected inconsistencies when expressed by human speakers but not when read from books, and 5-year-olds detected inconsistencies in both contexts (Experiment 2). In both experiments, children demonstrated skepticism toward testimony from previously inconsistent sources. Executive function and working memory each predicted inconsistency detection. These findings indicate logical inconsistency understanding emerges in early childhood, is supported by social and domain general cognitive skills, and plays a role in adaptive learning from testimony.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) (NIH); National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: 5T32HD007151; 1024298