chapter  7
15 Pages

Cultural differences in children’s learning from others


To date, most research on children’s selective learning from others has systematically focused on the cues young children use to determine whether or not an informant (or a group of informants) is a trustworthy source. Based on this research, it appears that children use two broad heuristics when determining informant credibility: (1) they attend to available epistemic information about informants, preferring to learn from an informant who has been previously correct (Birch, Vauthier & Bloom, 2008; Koenig & Harris, 2005; Pasquini, Corriveau, Koenig, & Harris, 2007; see Harris & Corriveau, 2011 for a review) and (2) they attend to available social information, preferring to learn from an informant who is met with consensus (Chen, Corriveau, & Harris, 2013; Corriveau, Fusaro, & Harris, 2009; Fusaro & Harris, 2008) or one who is a member of their social in-group (e.g., accent, race, gender, familiarity: Chen et al., 2013; Corriveau & Harris, 2009; Corriveau, Kinzler, & Harris, 2013; Kinzler, Corriveau, & Harris, 2011; Mascaro & Sperber, 2009; Shutts, Banaji, & Spelke, 2010). This work has been instrumental in highlighting children’s relative weighting of social and epistemic cues, and in charting the developmental time-course of children’s selective learning from others.