|Alternative Title||Preschoolers' Learning Processes of Modes of Construal: The Roles of Question Duestion Domains and Expectation of Modes|
which resulted in the question-answer interaction becomes the major way of social learning and the explanation-seeking becomes the major type of the interaction. Children selectively seek explanations as they usually distinguish reliable explanators or reasonable explanations. People always adopted distinct modes of construal when they answered why-questions, such as teleo-functional explanations or causal/mechanical explanations. Previous studies investigated preschoolers' selection and learning of others' explanations while their result overlooked the role of domain-specificity of the mode of construal and children's inherent bias of the mode of construal, leading to children's capabilities of distinguishing and acquiring different modes of construal were underestimated. Further, when young children are asked to explain animal behaviors or artifact's movements, they don't show apparent bias of modes of construal. Therefore, to fill up the gaps previous studies left out, the present study tried to research preschoolers' learning processes about modes of construal in domains mentioned above. Additionally, the current study also investigated young children's teaching behaviors, which called social transmission that attracted much researchers' attention recently, bringing about a consecutive understanding of learning processes about modes of construal. To sum up, the present study would carry out a series of experiments to make clear what preschoolers' acquisition (Study 1) and transmission (Study 2) of modes of construal are, and how question domains (Experiment 1)，individual differences (Experiment 2) and expectations of modes (Experiment 3) influence these processes.
Study 1，based on prior works, tried to investigate the role of question domains in preschoolers' learning processes about modes of construal. In experiment 1，we recruited 96 4一to _5一year-old children to study how they acquire and generalize other's explanations, with age and modes of construal as between一subject factors and question domains as the within-subject factor. The results showed that: (1) Preschoolers apparently acquired and generalized other's explanations as they gave more responses that were similar with other's modes of construal when they encountered familiar or novel stimulus; (2) Compared with animal behaviors, children generalized others' explanations more severely in the domain of artifact's movements; (3) Regard as other's explanations, 5-year-old generalized more severely, evaluated lower and remembered better than 4-year-old; (4) Additionally, preschoolers recalled other's explanations of animals better than of artifacts. These results revealed that preschoolers can acquire and generalize other's explanations, especially other's modes of construal, and their generalization and recall of other's explanations are domain-specific.
Thereafter, study 1 tried to find out what individual differences that minored preschoolers' performance at learning about modes of construal are. In experiment 2, researcher re-recruited the preschoolers who had taken part in experiment 1 and tested their cognitive and social-cognitive capabilities. The results showed that: (1) Cognitive flexibility (CF) can marginally significantly predict preschoolers' acquisition of modes of construal, while CF can significantly predict preschoolers' generalization of modes of construal; (2) Sex can significantly predict preschoolers' acquisition of modes of construal, while age (in month) can significantly predict preschoolers' generalization of modes of construal. These results revealed that the differences between cognitive flexibility can reflect preschoolers' different performance at learning about modes of construal while the difference between social-cognitive abilities cannot. Moreover, some demographic differences can also partially reflected preschoolers' different performance.
Even though having some methodological flaws, which cannot reflect the free selectivity during learning processes because children could only hear single mode of construal, Study 1 still ensured the role of question domains in the learning processes. To ameliorated these deficits, Study 2 would adopt the daul-informants paradigm and investigated the transmission phase of learning process. In experiment 3, we recruited 84 4- to 5-year-old children to study how they selected other's explanations and whether they make their decisions depends on other's expectation. This experiment set questioner's expectation of modes as the between-subject factor and set question domains and modes of construal as the within-subject factors. The results showed that: (1)Preschoolers rated higher when others explained animal behaviors with the teleolo-functional mode than when someone explained same questions with the causal/mechanical mode; They also rated higher when others explained artifact's movements with the causal/mechanical mode than when someone explained animal behaviors with the same mode; (2) Preschooler explained in different and corresponding modes as responses of other's distinct expectation of modes. These results revealed that preschoolers' evaluations of other's explanations with different modes are depends on the question domains, which implicated that modes of construal are domain-specific. In addition, preschoolers can discriminate distinct expectation of modes, and disregard their prior evaluations of modes to respond appropriately with regard other's specific expectation of modes.
These studies gained nearly ideal results that support the research hypotheses, which means preschoolers selectively learn modes of construal. The selectivity was reflected by domain-specificity of modes of construal, which manifested by preschoolers evaluating, generalizing and recalling modes of construal differently in distinct domains. The differences of preschoolers' performance may spring from their individual differences. Moreover, the understanding of expectation of modes may be a key cognitive component underlying the transmission of others' explanations. The present studies not only facilitate researcher to deepen their understanding of cognitive development, which reveals children's conceptual representing and causal inferencing, but also guide teachers and parents to respond kids' explanation-seeking and to promote peer tutoring.
|Keyword||解释模式 问题领域 模式预期 社会学习 习得与传递|
|Place of Conferral||中国科学院心理研究所|
|柴凯轩. 学前儿童对解释模式的学习过程:问题领域及模式预期的作用[D]. 中国科学院心理研究所. 中国科学院大学,2019.|
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