Skip to main content

Under what conditions do children have difficulty in inhibiting imitation? Evidence for the importance of planning specific responses

Simpson, Andrew; Riggs, Kevin J.

Authors

Andrew Simpson



Abstract

The response set effect has been observed in a number of developmental tasks that are proposed to required inhibition. This effect has been interpreted as evidence that the specific responses children plan to make in these tasks become prepotent. Here we investigated whether there is a response set effect in the hand game. In this task, children need to suppress imitation and make a fist in response to a finger and point a finger in response to a fist.Following pilot data, we tested 7- and 11-year-olds (N=36, Experiment 1) and then 5- and 6-year-olds (N=40, Experiment 2). A response set effect was observed in the hand game with children 6years of age and older. Thus, we obtained evidence consistent with a domain-general intentional mechanism that modulates prepotency. In the General discussion, we consider how this mechanism may work and how our findings relate to current theories of imitation.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date 2011-08
Journal Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Print ISSN 0022-0965
Electronic ISSN 0022-0965
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 109
Issue 4
Pages 512-524
APA6 Citation Simpson, A., & Riggs, K. J. (2011). Under what conditions do children have difficulty in inhibiting imitation? Evidence for the importance of planning specific responses. Journal of experimental child psychology, 109(4), 512-524. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jecp.2011.02.015
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jecp.2011.02.015
Keywords Experimental and Cognitive Psychology; Developmental and Educational Psychology
Publisher URL https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022096511000804
;