Thinking About People

Thinking About People

Project GARDEN (The University of Texas at Dallas)

Who Can Participate

3- to 6-year-old children and their caregivers who are participating in Project GARDEN and are able to understand and answer questions in English. Project GARDEN is not currently recruiting new families. If you’re already in Project GARDEN and you want to see which study your child can do next, visit, click "Start Now", and select your child's name under "Find studies for..."

What Happens

In this Project GARDEN study, your child will watch short videos about individuals from a fictional group called Zarpies. These Zarpies will be presented doing various activities like bouncing a ball on their head or sleeping in a tree. Then, your child will be asked short questions about the attributes of Zarpies as a whole.

What We're Studying

We know from previous research that children form essentialist beliefs at a very young age. Essentialist beliefs are the idea that certain social categories like gender and race mark fundamentally distinct kinds of people. We are interested in how children may form essentialist beliefs when they have very little information about a given group and how this may change with age. In order to explore this, we introduce individuals from a fictional group named Zarpies and ask children about the group as a whole.


10 minutes


You will receive a $5 gift card (usable on the U.S. website only) as soon as possible after participating in the study (within 7 business days).

This study is conducted by Marjorie Rhodes (contact:

Would you like to participate in this study?