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A comparison of children and adults' judgements and decisions based on verbal uncertainty statements

By Amelie Gourdon and Gaelle Villejoubert


Children distinguish less well than adolescents the numerical\ud meaning conveyed by verbal probabilities (e.g., Mullet &\ud Rivet, 1991). Little is known, however, about children's\ud ability to grasp the directionality of verbal probabilities\ud (Teigen & Brun, 1995). We expected children to only be\ud influenced by directionality and congruence of statement\ud framing with their goal. Thirty children and 29 adults made\ud probability judgements and decisions in a treasure hunt\ud context. Results revealed that children are sensitive to the\ud numerical meaning of verbal probabilities in decisions, and\ud also in probability judgements related to goal-incongruent\ud statement framings. The different demands implied by\ud judging probabilities and decision-making will be discussed,\ud as well as the independence of directionality and numerical\ud value in adults' interpretation of verbal probabilities

Topics: psychology
Publisher: Cognitive Science Society
Year: 2009
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