Research Focus

Selective credulity

People often prefer members of their own group to members of other groups.  This ingroup favoritism emerges early…
Read more

Current Studies

Click the study title for more information.

White Lie-Telling Behaviour

Eligibility: Eastern European-Canadian children, age 3.5 – 6.5.

Execution: via Zoom (approx. 20 mins).

This study explores how a child’s cultural background, their parent’s parenting style, and their parent’s levels of collectivism affect whether or not they choose to tell a white lie in a regular situation or a situation with social consequences. During this study, your child will be asked their opinion on the experimenter’s appearance and artwork and then will respond to a brief questionnaire.

Attitudes

Eligibility: Children age 6-8.

Execution: Via Zoom (approx. 15 – 20 mins).

This study investigates how children perceive people who gossip. You and your child can participate in one (or both!) of the following studies: Study 1: investigates whether children’s attitudes towards gossipers are influenced by positive, negative, or neutral gossip and depending on the relationship the child has with the gossiper; Study 2: investigate children’s social perception of the gossiper when the gossip content is prosocial or self-serving. In both studies, your child will be read a virtual storybook and will be asked a few questions.

Gender in Media

Eligibility: Children age 4-5 and 7-8.

Execution: Via Zoom (approx. 30 mins).

This study investigates how gender stereotypes influence children’s perceptions of media characters. You and your child can participate in one (or both!) of the following tasks: Task 1: Your child will view two images of media characters along with an image in the middle depicting a male-stereotypical activity or a female-stereotypical activity. Then, they will be asked to select which character they think knows more about the activity and which character they would prefer to learn from; Task 2: Your child will listen to audio recordings of fictional scenarios that contain a problem. Then, your child will be shown two images of media characters and asked to decide who they think should solve the problem.

Expertise

Eligibility: Children age 4-5.

Execution: Via Zoom (approx. 30 mins).

This study explores whether children prefer to learn new information from some people over others based on factors such as one’s expertise and whether a person shares similarities with the child. Your child will be presented with images/audio clips of two people side by side and decide from whom they prefer to learn new information and whom they would prefer to learn from in the future.