Children's Ability to Judge Self and Other's Knowledge States for Novel Information
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Type of Work26 pages
Young children are constantly learning new facts, skills and social conventions. Understanding how learning happens promotes the learning process and develops as children get older. Thinking about one's own learning is related to the ability to think about another's learning, or theory of mind skills. Previous literature has examined memory and perspective taking, particularly for generic information. It is important to consider whether these findings apply to non-generic information as well. This study utilizes novel information to examine how children's perspective taking abilities relate to their ability to reflect on their learning. Forty-seven children, ages 3-7, participated in a one session study conducted either at a local museum or zoo. First, participants learned three facts about the Aleutian Islands through a staged learning event. Based on Caza et al.' s (2016) model, for each of the three facts about the Aleutian Islands, participants were asked about what they know currently (self-now), what they knew when they were a baby (self-past) and what someone who is currently a baby (baby-now) would know regarding the facts about the Aleutian Islands. Results indicated that there was a significant effect of age where the 5-7 age group was better at determining their own and other's knowledge levels than the 3-4 age group. Both age groups performed above chance on correctness of facts. Overall, the results show that while older children were more able to reflect on their own learning and the learning of others, there was no significant difference in this ability based on knowledge condition.