Can we dissociate contingency learning from social learning in word acquisition by 24-month-olds?


Journal Article

We compared 24-month-old children's learning when their exposure to words came either in an interactive (coupled) context or in a nonsocial (decoupled) context. We measured the children's learning with two different methods: one in which they were asked to point to the referent for the experimenter, and the other a preferential looking task in which they were encouraged to look to the referent. In the pointing test, children chose the correct referents for words encountered in the coupled condition but not in the decoupled condition. In the looking time test, however, they looked to the targets regardless of condition. We explore the explanations for this and propose that the different response measures are reflecting two different kinds of learning.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Bannard, C; Tomasello, M

Published Date

  • January 2012

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 7 / 11

Start / End Page

  • e49881 -

PubMed ID

  • 23185473

Pubmed Central ID

  • 23185473

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1932-6203

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1932-6203

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1371/journal.pone.0049881


  • eng