|Appears in Collections:||Psychology eTheses|
|Title:||I am the boss of me: The executive function of self-awareness in 3- and 4-year-olds|
|Supervisor(s):||Anderson, James Russell|
Campbell, Robin N.
|Publisher:||University of Stirling|
|Abstract:||The current research explored the thesis that cognitive self-recognition might have an executive function in 3- and 4-year-olds. Although it is well established that children recognise themselves in mirrors by the end of infancy, the cognitive and behavioural impact of this capacity has yet to be elucidated. Experiments 1 to 6 showed that preschool children could form and maintain a cognitive link between the self and external stimuli, as a result of which, self-referent stimuli were given mnemonic priority. Experiments 4 to 8 indicated that in tasks involving self-recognition, 3- and 4-year-olds’ ability to process other-referent stimuli was compromised by self-focus. Finally, Experiments 9 and 10 demonstrated that mirror self-recognition increased preschoolers’ tendency to self-regulate, leading them to behave in line with socially accepted standards. Together, these experiments provide novel evidence to confirm that cognitive self-recognition has a role in preschoolers’ performance on tasks requiring memory, attention, inhibition, and planning. This implies that when salient, the self may become the ultimate executer of behaviour. By observing 3- and 4-year-olds’ differential processing of self- and other-referent stimuli we infer the existence of a functionally active, self-reflective agent. Moreover, the role of the self is temporally extended, influencing children’s cognition and behaviour in the past (Experiment 1 to 3), present (Experiments 4 to 8) and future (Experiments 9 to 10). This implies that preschool children may have developed the foundations necessary to build the experience of personal identity.|
|Type:||Thesis or Dissertation|
|Affiliation:||School of Natural Sciences|
This item is protected by original copyright
Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.
If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.