More than true: Developmental changes in use of the inductive strength for selective trust

Abstract

When learning from others, it is important to take a critical stance—evaluating both the informants themselves as well as the content of their claims. In addition to accuracy, one can evaluate claims based on quality. The current study investigates developmental change in learners’ evaluations of evidence that varies in quality—inductive strength based on typicality or diversity. We found that while younger children track which informant provides which examples, they do not have clear preferences for the informant who provides stronger examples. Older children, on the other hand, are in the middle of a developmental transition. They rate informants who provide inductively strong examples as more trustworthy, but only reliably choose the informant who provides diverse examples.


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