"What's their goal?": Study overview

Eligibility criteria

For babies aged 11 to 13 months who hear mainly English in their household and does not hear Spanish regularly; each child may only participate in this study once

Duration 15 minutes

We hope that your baby will enjoy our study! However, there will be no monetary compensation for participating in this study.

What happens

In this study, your baby will first watch a video where two female experimenters will introduce themselves. After the introduction, your baby will watch a scene in which one of the experimenters will repeatedly select one toy over another. After a number of scenes, the placement of the toys will switch and the experimenter will continue selecting the same toy or a new toy. Your baby's looking behaviour will be recorded, and we’re interested in whether understanding someone’s language affects babies' ability to understand other people's goals. During the study, we will ask you to either keep your eyes closed or be turned around facing away from the screen. There will be more detailed instructions on how to hold your baby during the study!

What we're studying

Babies reason about other people's goals through observation: if they see a person consistently choose option A over option B, they will start thinking that this person prefers A over B, and will be surprised when this person suddenly starts choosing B when A is available. Interestingly, babies don't generalize this type of reasoning to everyone! If an inanimate object (for example, not a human) reaches for the same object over and over, babies don't make the same type of inference. In this study, we are interested in whether babies make different inferences about people's goals depending on whether they speak the same language as them. This will help us understand how babies perceive people who are different from themselves!

This study is conducted by J. Kiley Hamlin (contact: hamlinlab@psych.ubc.ca)

Would you like to participate in this study?

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