Scale Model Task
In the Scale Model Task, children are asked to retrieve an object hidden in a room after seeing the experimenter hide a miniature version of the object hidden in a scale model of the room. (pp. 242-244) The results of many experiments show that in this task:
- 2.5-year-olds fail.
- 3-year-olds succeed.
- 2.5-year-olds succeed if told model is shrunk version of the room in which they will search ("shrinking machine").
- Overall, children are more likely to succeed if the model is more similar (identical) to the room in which they perform the search.
In class we have discussed how different theories (Piaget, Information Processing, Sociocultural theory (pp.159-164) might explain these results.
Here are a few more pieces of the puzzle:
- Decreasing the physical salience of the scale model (by placing it behind a window), makes 2.5-year-olds more likely to succeed.
- Increasing the model's salience as an object (by letting the child manipulate it), makes 3-year-olds more likely to fail.
- 5-7-year-olds can succeed in this task with no instructions.
- 4-year-olds can succeed in this task with less instructions than 3-year-olds require.
Please answer the following questions:
Anatomically detailed dolls are often use to interview children in cases of suspected sexual abuse, especially with very young children.
2. What do the results discussed above suggest about children's ability to use the doll as a representation of themselves?
3. Do any of the theories discussed above suggest a way to circunvent the potential problems of this method?
skills practiced:
think critically about classic and contemporary issues of child development.
interpret research findings.
use research to evaluate critically popular reports and applied issues.
apply research findings to concrete problems in the real world.