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ERIC Number: EJ939930
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Nov
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0261-510X
Precursors of a Theory of Mind: A Longitudinal Study
Colonnesi, Cristina; Rieffe, Carolien; Koops, Willem; Perucchini, Paola
British Journal of Developmental Psychology, v26 n4 p561-577 Nov 2008
The study examined whether the pointing gesture and intentional understanding abilities at 12 and 15 months of age predict the later understanding of perception and intention, as well as the ability to explain others' actions in a psychological way at 39 months of age. Thirty-five infants (18 girls) were administered pointing and intention-understanding tasks at the age of 12 and 15 months. Children were again evaluated at the age of 39 months with perception and intention tasks, and a psychological explanation task. Results showed that only 12-month-olds' comprehension of the pointing gesture with an imperative motive contributed to the prediction of later understanding of perception and mentalistic explanations of actions. Moreover, the ability of 12- and 15-month-olds to understand intentions contributed to the prediction of later preschool understanding of perceptions and intentions. These results indicate that a developmental trajectory in children's understanding of mental states from infancy to childhood is present, but depends on the level of engagement and communication that are required to perform these tasks.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A