The most readily-observable and influential cue to one’s credibility is their confidence. Although one’s confidence correlates with knowledge, one should not always trust confident sources or disregard hesitant ones. Three experiments (N = 662; 3- to 12-year-olds) examined the developmental trajectory of children’s understanding of ‘calibration’: whether a person’s confidence or hesitancy correlates with their knowledge. Experiments 1 and 2 provide evidence that children use a person’s history of calibration to guide their learning. Experiments 2 and 3 revealed a developmental progression in calibration understanding: Children preferred a well calibrated over a miscalibrated confident person by around 4 years, whereas even 7- to 8-year olds were insensitive to calibration in hesitant people. The widespread implications for social learning, impression formation, and social cognition are discussed.
Birch, Susan A.J.Severson, Rachel L.Baimel, Adam
Department of Psychology, Health and Professional Development
Year of publication: 2020Date of RADAR deposit: 2019-12-19