Format

Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Dev Psychol. 2004 Sep;40(5):882-9.

The ghost condition: imitation versus emulation in young children's observational learning.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, U Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland. d.thompson@strath.ac.uk

Abstract

Although observational learning by children may occur through imitating a modeler's actions, it can also occur through learning about an object's dynamic affordances--a process that M. Tomasello (1996) calls "emulation." The relative contributions of imitation and emulation within observational learning were examined in a study with 14- to 26-month-old children. The effectiveness of a "ghost" condition, in which the effective operation of the means apparatus was seen to occur without human agency, was compared with that of a standard modeling procedure in which the child saw an experimenter demonstrate the means action. The ghost condition was as likely to encourage observational learning as was the modeling condition; indeed, performance in the ghost condition was significantly better. The role of emulation in the development of observational learning is discussed in the context of a possible form of goal directedness without agency.

PMID:
15355173
DOI:
10.1037/0012-1649.40.5.882
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for American Psychological Association
    Loading ...
    Support Center