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January 2011



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By Psych Central News Editor
Reviewed by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on September 22, 2010 

According to research presented at the Sociolinguistics Symposium this month, children are learning to use profanity — swearing — at an earlier age. And the researchers found children are also swearing more often than children did just a few decades ago.

Timothy Jay, a psychology professor at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, presented this data at the conference held earlier this month in the U.K.

Jay suggests the rise in profanity among children is not surprising, given the general rise of the use of swearing among adults during the same time period.

“By the time kids go to school now, they’re saying all the words that we try to protect them from on television,” says Jay. “We find their swearing really takes off between (ages) three and four.”

Kids aren’t learning swearing at an earlier age from the television they watch. The rise in cursing mirrors the rise in cursing among adults in the past thirty years that Professor Jay has been studying the psychology of swearing.

Read in Full:  http://psychcentral.com/news/2010/09/22/children-are-swearing-more-often-at-earlier-age/18596.html


By what age do children recognise that plagiarism is wrong?

Thursday, 23 September 2010

To view plagiarism as an adult does, a child must combine several pieces of a puzzle: they need to understand that not everyone has access to all ideas; that people can create their own ideas; and that stealing an idea, like stealing physical property, is wrong.

There’s been plenty of research on children’s understanding of physical property ownership, which has shown that a rudimentary understanding is already in place by age two. Now in the first ever systematic study of its kind, Kristina Olson and Alex Shaw at Yale have investigated children’s understanding of the ownership of ideas.

Across three studies, Olson and Shaw presented children aged between three and eleven with vignettes and puppet videos in which two characters either both came up with their own idea for what to draw in art class, or one character copied what the other one had drawn. By age five to six, children showed less liking for characters who copied and rated them as ‘more bad’. Crucially, they gave copying as their justification for these negative appraisals. ‘These results demonstrate a relatively sophisticated understanding of ideas as early as age five years,’ the researchers said.

Read in Full:  http://bps-research-digest.blogspot.com/2010/09/by-what-age-do-children-recognise-that.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+BpsResearchDigest+(BPS+Research+Digest)

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