Twelve-month-old infants can use previous observations as a basis to understand new interactions, although five-month-olds cannot, according to a Yale study.
"This finding shows not only that one-year-old infants are paying attention to the actions of others, but that they can focus on a behavior in one scene and use that information to interpret behavior in a different scene," said Valerie Kuhlmeier, a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Psychology and lead author of the study published in the September issue of Psychological Science.
The researchers studied the age at which children begin to interpret the behavior of other individuals based on inferences about other persons’ emotions, desires and beliefs. The ability to predict and understand certain mental states is thought to emerge between the ages of three and five years, but there is growing interest in infants’ reasoning about the behavior of others.
Jacqueline Weaver | EurekAlert!
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