Taking versus confronting visual perspectives in preschool children.
Recent evidence suggests that 3-year-olds can take other people's visual perspectives not only when they perceive different things (Level 1) but even when they see the same thing differently (Level 2). One hypothesis is that 3-year-olds are good perspective takers but cannot confront different perspectives on the same object (Perner, Stummer, Sprung, & Doherty, 2002). In 2 studies using color filters, 3-year-olds were unable to judge in what color they and an adult saw the same picture. This was the case irrespective of whether children replied verbally (pilot study) or by pointing to color samples (main study). However, 3-year-olds readily took an adult's perspective by determining which of 2 objects an adult referred to as being a certain color, independently from how the children saw the objects (main study). Taken together, these results suggest that preschoolers' difficulty is not so much taking perspectives as it is directly confronting another's view with their own-an ability that seems to be acquired between 4 and 5 years of age.
Moll, H; Meltzoff, AN; Merzsch, K; Tomasello, M
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