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Journal of Experimental Child Psychology

Matthew H Kim, Loren M Marulis, Jennie K Grammer, Frederick J Morrison, William J Gehring
Motivational beliefs and values influence how children approach challenging activities. The current study explored motivational processes from an expectancy-value theory framework by studying children's mistakes and their responses to them by focusing on two event-related potential (ERP) components: the error-related negativity (ERN) and the error positivity (Pe). Motivation was assessed using a child-friendly challenge puzzle task and a brief interview measure prior to ERP testing. Data from 50 4- to 6-year-old children revealed that greater perceived competence beliefs were related to a larger Pe, whereas stronger intrinsic task value beliefs were associated with a smaller Pe...
November 26, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Menahem Yeari, Shiri Elentok, Rachel Schiff
Numerous studies have demonstrated that poor inferential processing underlies the specific deficit of poor comprehenders. However, it is still not clear why poor comprehenders have difficulties in generating inferences while reading and whether this impairment is general or specific to one or more types of inferences. The current study employed an online probing method to examine the spontaneous immediate activation of two inference types-forward-predictive inferences and backward-explanatory inferences-during reading...
November 25, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Julia W Van de Vondervoort, Paul Meinz, Ori Friedman
We report two experiments supporting the theory that children's understanding of ownership rights is related to their notions of body rights. Experiment 1 investigated 4- to 7-year-olds' (N=123) developing sensitivity to physical contact in their judgments about the acceptability of behaving in relation to owned objects and body parts. Experiment 2 used a simpler design to investigate this in 3- and 4-year-olds (N=112). Findings confirmed two predictions of the theory. First, in both experiments, children's judgments about ownership and body rights were similarly affected by physical contact...
November 23, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Jiaxin Cui, George K Georgiou, Yiyun Zhang, Yixun Li, Hua Shu, Xinlin Zhou
Rapid automatized naming (RAN) has been found to predict mathematics. However, the nature of their relationship remains unclear. Thus, the purpose of this study was twofold: (a) to examine how RAN (numeric and non-numeric) predicts a subdomain of mathematics (arithmetic fluency) and (b) to examine what processing skills may account for the RAN-arithmetic fluency relationship. A total of 160 third-year kindergarten Chinese children (83 boys and 77 girls, mean age=5.11years) were assessed on RAN (colors, objects, digits, and dice), nonverbal IQ, visual-verbal paired associate learning, phonological awareness, short-term memory, speed of processing, approximate number system acuity, and arithmetic fluency (addition and subtraction)...
November 21, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Tessa A M Lansu, Tirza H J van Noorden, Marike H F Deutz
This study examined whether victimization is associated with negatively distorted social cognition (bias), or with a specific increased sensitivity to social negative cues, by assessing the perception of social exclusion and the consequences for psychological well-being (moods and fundamental needs). Both self-reported and peer-reported victimization of 564 participants (Mage=9.9years, SD=1.04; 49.1% girls) were measured, and social exclusion was manipulated through inclusion versus exclusion in a virtual ball-tossing game (Cyberball)...
November 19, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Elena Hoicka, Jessica Butcher, Felicity Malla, Paul L Harris
This research demonstrates that preschoolers (a) avoid trusting informants with humorous intentions when learning novel information and (b) flexibly consider current intentions rather than initial intentions when determining who to trust. In Study 1 (N=61), 3- and 4-year-olds based their trust on intentions or intentional cues alone, trusting a sincere informant over a joker, even when no prior accuracy or inaccuracy was displayed. In Study 2 (N=32), 3- and 4-year-olds flexibly based their trust on the informants' current intentions or intentional cues rather than their initial ones...
November 16, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Hiroyuki Tsubomi, Katsumi Watanabe
Visual working memory (VWM) enables active maintenance of goal-relevant visual information in a readily accessible state. The storage capacity of VWM is severely limited, often as few as 3 simple items. Thus, it is crucial to restrict distractor information from consuming VWM capacity. The current study investigated how VWM storage and distractor resistance develop during childhood in relation to academic performance in the classroom. Elementary school children (7- to 12-year-olds) and adults (total N=140) completed a VWM task with and without visual/verbal distractors during the retention period...
November 10, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Meike Slagt, Judith Semon Dubas, Marcel A G van Aken, Bruce J Ellis, Maja Deković
Differential susceptibility theory proposes that a subset of individuals exist who display enhanced susceptibility to both negative (risk-promoting) and positive (development-enhancing) environments. This experiment represents the first attempt to directly test this assumption by exposing children in the experimental group to both negative and positive feedback using puppet role-plays. It thereby serves as an empirical test as well as a methodological primer for testing differential susceptibility. Dutch children (N=190, 45...
November 9, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Regula Neuenschwander, Clancy Blair
When delaying gratification, both motivational and regulatory processes are likely to be at play; however, the relative contributions of motivational and regulatory influences on delay behavior are unclear. By examining behavioral responses during a delay task, this study sought to examine the motivational (anticipatory behavior) and regulatory mechanisms (executive function and self-control strategies) underlying children's self-regulation. The participants, 65 5- to 9-year-old children (Mage=7.19years, SD=0...
November 9, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Karinne Sauval, Laetitia Perre, Lynne G Duncan, Eva Marinus, Séverine Casalis
Previous masked priming research has shown automatic phonological activation during visual word recognition in monolingual skilled adult readers. Activation also occurs across languages in bilingual adult readers, suggesting that the activation of phonological representations is not language specific. Less is known about developing readers. First, it is unclear whether there is automatic phonological activation during visual word recognition among children in general. Second, no empirical data exist on whether the activation of phonological representations is language specific or not in bilingual children...
November 8, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Amy A Weimer, Susan J Parault Dowds, William V Fabricius, Paula J Schwanenflugel, Go Woon Suh
Two studies examined the development of constructivist theory of mind (ToM) during late childhood and early adolescence. In Study 1, a new measure was developed to assess participants' understanding of the interpretive and constructive processes embedded in memory, comprehension, attention, comparison, planning, and inference. Using this measure, Study 2 tested a mediational model in which prosocial reasoning about conflict mediated the relation between constructivist ToM and behavior problems in high school...
November 4, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Rebecca-Lee Kuhnert, Sander Begeer, Elian Fink, Marc de Rosnay
Although key differences have been found in boys' and girls' prosocial behavior toward peers, few studies have systematically examined gender differences in how intrinsic perspective-taking abilities-theory of mind (ToM) and emotion understanding (EU)-and the extrinsic peer environment relate to prosocial behavior. In this prospective longitudinal study, we studied gender differences in the relations between children's observed prosocial behavior and their ToM, EU, and social preference ratings in 114 children (58 boys and 56 girls)...
October 22, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Connor H G Patros, R Matt Alderson, Kristen L Hudec, Stephanie J Tarle, Sarah E Lea
Changes in motor activity were examined across control and executive function (EF) tasks that differ with regard to demands placed on visuospatial working memory (VS-WM) and self-control processes. Motor activity was measured via actigraphy in 8- to 12-year-old boys with (n=15) and without (n=17) attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) during the completion of VS-WM, self-control, and control tasks. Results indicated that boys with ADHD, relative to typically developing boys, exhibited greater motor activity across tasks, and both groups' activity was greater during EF tasks relative to control tasks...
October 21, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Frances Buttelmann, David Buttelmann
The ability to attribute and represent others' mental states (e.g., beliefs; so-called "theory of mind") is essential for participation in human social interaction. Despite a considerable body of research using tasks in which protagonists in the participants' attentional focus held false or true beliefs, the question of automatic belief attribution to bystander agents has received little attention. In the current study, we presented adults and 6-year-olds (N=92) with an implicit computer-based avoidance false-belief task in which participants were asked to place an object into one of three boxes...
October 11, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Wilma C M Resing, Merel Bakker, Christine M E Pronk, Julian G Elliott
The current study investigated developmental trajectories of analogical reasoning performance of 104 7- and 8-year-old children. We employed a microgenetic research method and multilevel analysis to examine the influence of several background variables and experimental treatment on the children's developmental trajectories. Our participants were divided into two treatment groups: repeated practice alone and repeated practice with training. Each child received an initial working memory assessment and was subsequently asked to solve figural analogies on each of several sessions...
October 6, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Bianca Jovanovic, Gudrun Schwarzer
One effect that illustrates how people adjust aspects of their grasping according to situational constraints is the grasp height effect; when reaching for objects positioned at different heights, adults' grasp height (vertical position of the hand on the object) tends to correlate negatively with object height. This indicates that grasp positions are planned so that they facilitate later placements of the object. The current study investigated the development of the grasp height effect with 3-year-old children, 5-year-old children, and adults...
October 1, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Tobias Grossmann, Sarah Jessen
Much research has focused on how infants respond to emotional facial expressions. One of the key findings in this area of research is that by 7months of age, but not younger, infants show a bias in processing fearful faces even when compared with other negative and novel facial expressions. A recent study by Heck and colleagues (Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 2016, Vol. 147, pp. 100-110) challenges this idea by showing that 5-month-olds looked longer at fearful faces than at happy and at neutral faces when dynamic displays (videos) are used...
September 27, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Karin M Vander Heyden, Mariette Huizinga, Maartje E J Raijmakers, Jelle Jolles
The current study investigated development and strategy use of spatial perspective taking (i.e., the ability to represent how an object or array of objects looks from other viewpoints) in children between 8 and 12years of age. We examined this ability with a task requiring children to navigate a route through a model city of wooden blocks from a 90° and 180° rotated perspective. We tested two hypotheses. First, we hypothesized that children's perspective-taking skills increase during this age period and that this process is related to a co-occurring increase in working memory capacity...
September 27, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Alison Heck, Alyson Hock, Hannah White, Rachel Jubran, Ramesh S Bhatt
Adults exhibit enhanced attention to negative emotions like fear, which is thought to be an adaptive reaction to emotional information. Previous research, mostly conducted with static faces, suggests that infants exhibit an attentional bias toward fearful faces only at around 7months of age. In a recent study (Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 2016, Vol. 147, pp. 100-110), we found that 5-month-olds also exhibit heightened attention to fear when tested with dynamic face videos. This indication of an earlier development of an attention bias to fear raises questions about developmental mechanisms that have been proposed to underlie this function...
September 26, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Elizabeth A Ware
This study bridges prior research on young children's use of taxonomic versus thematic relations to categorize objects with prior research on their use of shared shape versus shared function to categorize artifacts. Specifically, this research examined associations in children's categorization tendencies across these two dichotomies, including assessments of individual differences, developmental trends, and vocabulary level. Preschoolers (3- to 5-year-olds) completed a receptive vocabulary assessment and two match-to-sample tasks: one pitting (superordinate) taxonomic and thematic relations against each other and one pitting shape and function similarity against each other...
September 26, 2016: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
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