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dc.contributor.authorMoraru, Cristina
dc.contributor.authorGomez, Juan-Carlos
dc.contributor.authorMcGuigan, Nicola
dc.identifier.citationMoraru , C , Gomez , J-C & McGuigan , N 2016 , ' Developmental changes in the influence of conventional and instrumental cues on over-imitation in 3- to 6-year-old children ' , Journal of Experimental Child Psychology , vol. 145 , pp. 34-47 .
dc.identifier.otherPURE: 240524381
dc.identifier.otherPURE UUID: 8884bdba-dd18-4f97-8475-f37f22700fab
dc.identifier.otherScopus: 84953449366
dc.identifier.otherBibCode: NIS240524381
dc.identifier.otherWOS: 000371560000004
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0002-0218-9834/work/64361098
dc.descriptionThis research was funded under the Undergraduate Research Internship Programme (URIP) organized by the University of St Andrews.en
dc.description.abstractPrevious studies have shown that children in the preschool period are fastidious imitators who copy models with such high levels of fidelity that task efficiency may be compromised. This over-imitative tendency, and the pervasive nature of it, has led to many explorations and theoretical interpretations of this behavior, including social, causal, and conventional explanations. In support of the conventional account, recent research has shown that children are more likely to over-imitate when the task is framed using conventional verbal cues than when it is framed using instrumental verbal cues. The aim of the current study was to determine whether 3- to 6-year-old children (N = 185, mean age = 60 months) would over-imitate when presented with instrumental and conventional verbal cues, which varied only minimally and were more directly comparable between instrumental and conventional contexts than those used in previous studies. In addition to varying the overall context, we also varied the instrumental prompt used such that the cues provided ranged in the extent to which they provided explicit instruction to omit the irrelevant actions. Counter to our predictions, and the high levels of over-imitation witnessed in previous studies, the older children frequently over-imitated irrespective of the context provided, whereas the youngest children over-imitated selectively, including the irrelevant actions only when the task was presented in a conventional frame. We propose that the age differences found following an instrumental presentation are a result of the youngest children being more open to the motivation of learning the causality of the task, whereas the older children were more strongly motivated to adopt a social convention.
dc.relation.ispartofJournal of Experimental Child Psychologyen
dc.rightsCopyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. This work is made available online in accordance with the publisher’s policies. This is the author created, accepted version manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at:
dc.subjectConventional frameen
dc.subjectInstrumental frameen
dc.subjectConventional verbal cuesen
dc.subjectInstrumental verbal cuesen
dc.subjectSocial learningen
dc.subjectBF Psychologyen
dc.titleDevelopmental changes in the influence of conventional and instrumental cues on over-imitation in 3- to 6-year-old childrenen
dc.typeJournal articleen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. School of Psychology and Neuroscienceen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. Institute of Behavioural and Neural Sciencesen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. Centre for Social Learning & Cognitive Evolutionen
dc.description.statusPeer revieweden

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