Developmental Changes in the Basis of Associational Contamination Thinking

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Three experiments evaluated the basis of associational contamination thinking among Japanese college students and 4- and 7-year-old children. "Associational contamination thinking" is the belief that mere proximity between a contaminant and a substance will render the substance noxious even without direct contact between contaminants and substances. In Experiment 1, 7-year-olds and adults engaged in associational contamination thinking more often for disgusting (feces and roaches) and dangerous (poison and O-157) contaminants than for taste contaminants (salt and sugar). However, 4-year-olds' predictions were not different among the three types of contaminants. In Experiment 2, when contaminants were assumed to have some biological properties, both adults and 7-year-olds were somewhat more likely to engage in associational contamination thinking; however, such a relation was not found in 4-year-olds. Younger children's similar thinking with related to all contaminants was not attributable to ignorance of the necessity of physical contact. Instead, it appeared to be due in part to overreliance on perceptual cues, as was suggested in Experiment 3.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-361
Number of pages19
JournalCognitive Development
Volume14
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1999 Apr
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Poisons
Feces
Cues
Salts
Thinking
Students

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology

Cite this

Developmental Changes in the Basis of Associational Contamination Thinking. / Toyama, Noriko.

In: Cognitive Development, Vol. 14, No. 2, 04.1999, p. 343-361.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{424e43287c4f4ab2aa8b77438fd91172,
title = "Developmental Changes in the Basis of Associational Contamination Thinking",
abstract = "Three experiments evaluated the basis of associational contamination thinking among Japanese college students and 4- and 7-year-old children. {"}Associational contamination thinking{"} is the belief that mere proximity between a contaminant and a substance will render the substance noxious even without direct contact between contaminants and substances. In Experiment 1, 7-year-olds and adults engaged in associational contamination thinking more often for disgusting (feces and roaches) and dangerous (poison and O-157) contaminants than for taste contaminants (salt and sugar). However, 4-year-olds' predictions were not different among the three types of contaminants. In Experiment 2, when contaminants were assumed to have some biological properties, both adults and 7-year-olds were somewhat more likely to engage in associational contamination thinking; however, such a relation was not found in 4-year-olds. Younger children's similar thinking with related to all contaminants was not attributable to ignorance of the necessity of physical contact. Instead, it appeared to be due in part to overreliance on perceptual cues, as was suggested in Experiment 3.",
author = "Noriko Toyama",
year = "1999",
month = "4",
language = "English",
volume = "14",
pages = "343--361",
journal = "Cognitive Development",
issn = "0885-2014",
publisher = "Elsevier Limited",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Developmental Changes in the Basis of Associational Contamination Thinking

AU - Toyama, Noriko

PY - 1999/4

Y1 - 1999/4

N2 - Three experiments evaluated the basis of associational contamination thinking among Japanese college students and 4- and 7-year-old children. "Associational contamination thinking" is the belief that mere proximity between a contaminant and a substance will render the substance noxious even without direct contact between contaminants and substances. In Experiment 1, 7-year-olds and adults engaged in associational contamination thinking more often for disgusting (feces and roaches) and dangerous (poison and O-157) contaminants than for taste contaminants (salt and sugar). However, 4-year-olds' predictions were not different among the three types of contaminants. In Experiment 2, when contaminants were assumed to have some biological properties, both adults and 7-year-olds were somewhat more likely to engage in associational contamination thinking; however, such a relation was not found in 4-year-olds. Younger children's similar thinking with related to all contaminants was not attributable to ignorance of the necessity of physical contact. Instead, it appeared to be due in part to overreliance on perceptual cues, as was suggested in Experiment 3.

AB - Three experiments evaluated the basis of associational contamination thinking among Japanese college students and 4- and 7-year-old children. "Associational contamination thinking" is the belief that mere proximity between a contaminant and a substance will render the substance noxious even without direct contact between contaminants and substances. In Experiment 1, 7-year-olds and adults engaged in associational contamination thinking more often for disgusting (feces and roaches) and dangerous (poison and O-157) contaminants than for taste contaminants (salt and sugar). However, 4-year-olds' predictions were not different among the three types of contaminants. In Experiment 2, when contaminants were assumed to have some biological properties, both adults and 7-year-olds were somewhat more likely to engage in associational contamination thinking; however, such a relation was not found in 4-year-olds. Younger children's similar thinking with related to all contaminants was not attributable to ignorance of the necessity of physical contact. Instead, it appeared to be due in part to overreliance on perceptual cues, as was suggested in Experiment 3.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0041578502&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0041578502&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

VL - 14

SP - 343

EP - 361

JO - Cognitive Development

JF - Cognitive Development

SN - 0885-2014

IS - 2

ER -