Children's differentiation between beliefs about matters of fact and matters of opinion.

Banerjee, Robin, Yuill, Nicola, Larson, Christina, Easton, Kate, Robinson, Elizabeth and Rowley, Martin (2007) Children's differentiation between beliefs about matters of fact and matters of opinion. Developmental Psychology, 43 (5). pp. 1084-1096. ISSN 0012-1649

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Abstract

Two experiments investigated children's implicit and explicit differentiation between beliefs about matters of fact and matters of opinion. In Experiment 1, 8- to 9-year-olds' (n = 88) explicit understanding of the subjectivity of opinions was found to be limited, but their conformity to others' judgments on a matter of opinion was considerably lower than their conformity to others' views regarding an ambiguous fact. In Experiment 2, children aged 6, 8, or 10 years (n = 81) were asked to make judgments either about ambiguous matters of fact or about matters of opinion and then heard an opposing judgment from an expert. All age groups conformed to the opposing judgments on factual matters more than they did to the experts' views on matters of opinion. However, only the oldest children explicitly recognized that opinions are subjective and cannot be "wrong." Implications of these results for models of children's reasoning about epistemic states are discussed.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: First author
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
Depositing User: Robin Banerjee
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 15:48
Last Modified: 16 Mar 2012 10:19
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/14487
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