Cultural and family influences on children's theory of mind development: a comparison of Australian and Iranian school-age children

Shahaeian, Ameneh, Nielsen, Mark, Peterson, Candida C. and Slaughter, Virginia (2013) Cultural and family influences on children's theory of mind development: a comparison of Australian and Iranian school-age children. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, OnlineFirst 1-14. doi:10.1177/0022022113513921


Author Shahaeian, Ameneh
Nielsen, Mark
Peterson, Candida C.
Slaughter, Virginia
Title Cultural and family influences on children's theory of mind development: a comparison of Australian and Iranian school-age children
Journal name Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0022-0221
1552-5422
Publication date 2013-11-29
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1177/0022022113513921
Volume OnlineFirst
Start page 1
End page 14
Total pages 14
Place of publication Thousand Oaks, CA, United States
Publisher Sage Publications
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Over the past three decades, considerable research effort has been expended charting how and when children develop an understanding of others’ minds. Multicultural studies allow us to determine what features of this important cognitive developmental achievement might be universal and what aspects are culturally specific. However, the body of literature in this area is slim and unsystematic. The current study therefore aimed to contrast and compare the sequence through which Western and non-Western children develop a theory of mind (ToM). One hundred sixty-four 3- to 9-year-old children from Australia and Iran were assessed using an expanded ToM Scale. Although children from both cultures had equivalent overall ToM scores, more Australian children showed an understanding of diversity of beliefs and desires whereas more Iranian children understood knowledge access and sarcasm. This study is the first to compare Western and non-Western children’s ToM development with a battery of ToM Scale tasks extended to include sarcasm. The cross-cultural similarities and differences revealed allow a deeper understanding of universal and culturally specific aspects of social-cognitive development.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Published online before print November 29, 2013

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Psychology Publications
 
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Created: Tue, 01 Apr 2014, 05:05:49 EST by Mrs Alison Pike on behalf of School of Psychology