ERIC Number: EJ778698
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2002-May
Reference Count: 0
Arrows of Time in Infancy: The Representation of Temporal-Causal Invariances
Friedman, William J.
Cognitive Psychology, v44 n3 p252-296 May 2002
Many transformations that take place over time can only occur in one temporal direction, and adults are highly sensitive to the differences between forward and backward presentations of such events. In seven experiments using two selective-looking paradigms, 4- and 8-month-olds were shown forward and backward videotapes of events involving the effects of gravity on liquids and solid objects and of the separation of whole objects into pieces. Four-month-olds showed a significant preference for the forward version of liquid pouring from a beaker to a glass. Eight-month-olds looked longer at the forward versions of this and four other gravity-related events but showed no directional preferences for the separation events. Several experiments indicate that longer looking at the forward versions of the gravity stimuli is not a product of attraction to specific perceptual features of the stimuli. A model based on the development of representations of types of events is presented and evaluated. [Additional funding for this study was provided by the Howard Hughes Medical Research Foundation and Oberlin College's Research and Development committee.]
Descriptors: Stimuli, Experiments, Infants, Adults, Causal Models, Time Perspective, Physics, Scientific Concepts
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Institutes of Health (DHHS), Bethesda, MD.; National Science Foundation, Arlington, VA.
Authoring Institution: N/A