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Week 17 Online Lecture Summary

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PSYC 100

Week 17 online Notes: Week 17-Self and Others: A Comparative Perspective 1. Self and Identity: • Rouge test— test used to determine development if a sense of self by using a dot of red color on the nose of the child or animal. The test subject is placed in front of a mirror and observed to see if recognition occurs • Children pass the rouge test between the ages of 15-24 months • 75% of chimps tested are able to pass the test • The development of self continues as language skills increase • Children at the age of 2 can refer to themselves verbally • Children between 3 and 4 can describe their personal characteristics verbally — self-descriptions tend to share certain qualities • Describe their physically observable traits , their abilities and preferences, their social relationships and their psychological states • Tend to be overwhelmingly positive— have difficulty distinguishing what they can do from what they want to do • Do not alter their opinions of their own abilities based on experiences— ignore relative performances in favour of linking skill to specific acts • Around 8 children become more likely to use knowledge about themselves to evaluate and modify their behavior • Self Concept—an individual’s perception of self. Including knowledge, feelings, and idea about oneself, it is used as a basis for how we describe ourselves • self concept becomes more nuanced at this age and they have increased access to autobiographical memory • autobiographical memory— memory for the specific experiences that make up a person life story; influences development of self-concept • able to use more broad terminology and begin to become more concerned with how others perceive them • when children reach early adolescence they often become quite concerned with how they are perceived by others • disappears as they gain a stronger and more coherent concept of who they are as individuals in later years • adolescents sometimes experience an imaginary audience in which they feel are watching and evaluating them more closely than actually occurs • Imaginary audience— adolescent thought process in which they believe thetare constantly on a stage and everyone is watching them., attending to their every move and mistake • This perception can intensify feelings of self-consciousness and questions about self-concept • They are also aware that different behaviors are appropriate in different contexts— can be confused on what it means for ones identity to behave differently or contradictorily • Adolescents work toward finding solutions for discrepancies as they age, become less concerned with appearances and more concerned with meeting their own expectations • The culture in which we develop influences the sense of self we develop • Different cultures around the world place different levels of importance on the individual— individualist cultures—and the group— collectivist cultures • Different cultural parenting styles can affect the time at which an infant gains the ability to pass the rouge test • In Collectivist cultures behaving differently in different contexts causes less emotional distress anoint individuals than it does in more individualist societies 2. Knowing Others: • Theory of Mind— expectations concerning how experience affects mental states, especially those of another. It is a reasoning process that attempts to predict how others might behave based in their motives, needs and goals • The ability to reason about what other people night know or believe and how knowledge will relate to their actions • Encompasses the ability to understand differences in visual, philosophical or experimental perspective among people and to understand differences in motives, goals or desires • Called a theory because although we cannot directly observe mental states of others we can make predictions about them with some accuracy based on experience • The ability to reason about the mental states of others usually arises in basic form in children around the age of 4 • Prior to this children are unable to solve the sorts of problems that require ToM • False –belief problems— set of tests used to determine children’s Theory of Mind and false-belief understanding • Most common test and has several varieties— the container test— false belief test that asks children to reason what is a container based on what is outside the container, or what was in the container and adjust as they learn the truth • The displacement test— false-belief task this the Sally Anne test that explores how children reason through a change in location form tow different perspectives • There are some development precursors to ToM o Intersubjectivity— the ability to share a focus of attention with others o Infants are capable of Intersubjectivity in a limited sense only minutes after birth o The imitate the facial expressions of those around them o Between ages 3-6 months begin to follow gazes of people • With habituation experiments researchers are able to demonstrate that infants are capable of understanding the goals of others • Infant habituation— the simplest form of learning in which a given stimulus is presented repeatedly. The child learns not to respond to an unimportant event that occurs repeatedly • The ability to understand other’s goals becomes more complex over time— basic goal awareness in 6 month old infants shows when distinguishing between goals of animate and inanimate objects expands to become much more sophisticated • By 12 months infants expand their understanding of goals by considering the situation of the other person when deducing their goals • They take into account the goal, actions, and situations of other people when trying to make sense of their actions • By 18 months they will reciprocate the intended action rather than the actual failed action • Lying is another development that occurs not long after belief and false belief understanding • Are the age of 3 it is considered part of normal cognitive development for children to begin lying • Executive functioning— the capacity to control impulses, plan complex actions, foresee consequences and use working memory • One of the factors that affects the development of Theory of Mind: • Preservation— the inability to switch strategies as new information is presented. Often occurs in young children and individuals with frontal lobe damage • Practice is also a powerful in ToM’s development • Suggested that this advantage in early ToM results from the rich social environment surrounding young children • Children who interact with older siblings have more opportunity to reason about mental states more similar to their own • ToM develops at an earlier age when parents explicitly ask children to think about the feelings of the victims of their actions • Children also achieve greater performance in false belief tasks after receiving training about perspective shifting and deception • ToM is partly learnable and possibly influenced by social and cultural environment • Knowledge of Epigenetics suggests that there may be a genetic component being triggered by the social environment • One theory is that ToM develops out of the same cluster of genetic and epigenetic processes as Autism Disorder • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)— group of developmental disorders that affect the brain’s normal development of social and communication skills o Is a lifelong disorder of thought that can manifest in behavior as early as 2 years old o Autism is characterized by difficulty understanding social situations and forming relationships and often by preserv
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