Descriptions focus on 1. External features (up to ages 6-8) Hair colour, size, gender, race, what they like to do, what they wore A trait if used is global and general (nice and mean)
Forget about the traits easily and can change them easily Conservation concept of personality which depends on the last interaction they had with the person If the last interaction was nice when Tommy is a nice person, and vice versa if last interaction was unpleasant Does not use personality as a constant thing but as an always changing concept 2. Internal features (beginning ages 7-8) Not very qualified and general No shades of grey in description Uses external qualities as examples of their personality, for example croaky voice, picks teeth, several traits being described the personas having a nasty personality Don’t have complex notation of personality But people have underlying way of being, they use this to describe their overall personality There could be something more than what they see that makes the person this way not just his personality 3. Qualifiers and inferences (beginning in teen years) Social comparison, for example, shy but can be talkative More complex characterisation Thinking more about other people; starting to understanding that you can be shy but at the same time talkative Abstract and complex in observation Research support (Barenboim, 1981) Children ages 6 – 16 described three people that they knew; the transcripts were then rated by other people 1. Behaviours (external) 2. Traits and Psychological (kind and mean, internal) 3. Qualifiers/Inferences Any mention in change of character Sometimes this, but sometimes that Mostly like this, however can sometimes be like this Barenboim Results Behaviours peaked at age 8 but not significant Traits peak at 14 but start at age 6 o Most commonly used Qualifiers and inferences o 30% used, started at age 10 and peaked at age 16 We develop more abstract, complex ways to describe people as we grow from elementary school to high-school
Summary So Far Children’s descriptions of others shift in the same way as do descriptions of themselves o And parallel to cognitive development What about understanding of other’s emotional state o Does our ability to read other’s feelings change with age Understanding Others’ Emotions Crucial to positive social relationships How can we deduce others’ emotions o Body and facial signals o Signals are incredibly important o How we manage the world without conflict, removes frustration, angry with interaction with the on-signal using person o Most are good as sending and receiving signals Starts at about age 1 and continues in adult years o What first impressions are based on o Understanding of social context We get hints of how someone must be feeling Other people respond to various situations in different ways o Theory of Mind Getting information needed to understand someone and why they are the way they are with interaction
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- Fall '13
- Theory of cognitive development