ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2013, Vol. 21 ›› Issue (3): 480-486.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2013.00480

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Children’s Social Epistemology: Children’s Selective Trust in Informants

YUAN Ming;DENG Zhu;JI Pei   

  1. (1 School of Psychology, The University of Sydney, Sydney, 2006, Australia) (2 School of Psychology, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing, 210097, China)
  • Received:2012-03-27 Online:2013-03-15 Published:2013-03-15
  • Contact: YUAN Ming

Abstract: Much of our knowledge is transmitted through what other people tell us. Children from the age of four recognise the differences in how trustworthy people are at providing information. Generally, children use the following cues to evaluate the credibility of the informants and to decide who to trust: familiarity, the informants’ past accuracy, and the feedback from other social agents. In future research, it will be important to investigate children’s selective trust in informants’ testimony in other areas, to manipulate other characteristics of the informants, and to examine the potential cultural variations.

Key words: social epistemology, informants, testimony, trust, critical thinking