Title

Is Our Tendency to Prefer Similar Others Innate? A Replication and Extension

Poster Number

16C

Lead Author Major

Psychology , Philosophy

Lead Author Status

Junior

Second Author Major

Psychology , Philosophy

Second Author Status

Junior

Format

Poster Presentation

Faculty Mentor Name

Carolynn Kohn

Faculty Mentor Email

ckohn@pacific.edu

Faculty Mentor Department

Psychology

Graduate Student Mentor Name

Amir Cruz-Khalili

Graduate Student Mentor Email

a_cruzkhalili@u.pacific.edu

Graduate Student Mentor Department

Psychology

Additional Mentors

Vinthia Wirantana, v_wirantana@u.pacific.edu, Psychology

Molly Hankla, m_hankla@u.pacific.edu, Psychology

Rutvi R. Patel , r_patel9@u.pacific.edu, Psychology

Abstract/Artist Statement

Researchers posit individuals’ tendency to prefer others similar to themselves is not learned, but innate. Mahajan and Wynn (2012) asked infants seated in their parents’ lap (n = 32), to choose between two foods, watch a puppet show during which two puppets verbally stated a liking or disliking of these foods, and then choose one of the puppets. More infants (87.5%) chose the puppet that “liked” the same food the infants chose, which led the researchers to suggest this tendency is innate. We replicated and extended their methodology to address the possibility of parent bias and use of a single choice measure. Infant-parent dyads were randomly assigned to Group 1 (n = 12) or Group 2 (n = 12). After choosing a food and watching the puppet show, infants in Group 1 chose a puppet 3-5 times before their parents were exposed to the parent bias measure and then chose an additional five times; parents in Group 2 were exposed to the parent bias measure first, then infants chose a puppet five times. First choice trials from Group 1 did not replicate findings, instead, 7 of 12 infants (58%) selected the similar puppet; interestingly, in Group 2, 10 of 12 (83%) chose the dissimilar puppet. Repeated choice trials showed no influence of parent bias (3 of 24 infants chose the similar puppet more often) but did show patterns of side stability with 18 of 24 infants (75%; 13 on the right and 5 on the left) making a majority of their puppet selections (i.e., 80% or more of the choice trials) on the same side. Moreover, two thirds of parents reported their infants had no history with either foods. Results suggest factors other than innate preference account for infant puppet selections.

Location

DeRosa University Center, Ballroom

Start Date

29-4-2017 10:00 AM

End Date

29-4-2017 12:00 PM

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Apr 29th, 10:00 AM Apr 29th, 12:00 PM

Is Our Tendency to Prefer Similar Others Innate? A Replication and Extension

DeRosa University Center, Ballroom

Researchers posit individuals’ tendency to prefer others similar to themselves is not learned, but innate. Mahajan and Wynn (2012) asked infants seated in their parents’ lap (n = 32), to choose between two foods, watch a puppet show during which two puppets verbally stated a liking or disliking of these foods, and then choose one of the puppets. More infants (87.5%) chose the puppet that “liked” the same food the infants chose, which led the researchers to suggest this tendency is innate. We replicated and extended their methodology to address the possibility of parent bias and use of a single choice measure. Infant-parent dyads were randomly assigned to Group 1 (n = 12) or Group 2 (n = 12). After choosing a food and watching the puppet show, infants in Group 1 chose a puppet 3-5 times before their parents were exposed to the parent bias measure and then chose an additional five times; parents in Group 2 were exposed to the parent bias measure first, then infants chose a puppet five times. First choice trials from Group 1 did not replicate findings, instead, 7 of 12 infants (58%) selected the similar puppet; interestingly, in Group 2, 10 of 12 (83%) chose the dissimilar puppet. Repeated choice trials showed no influence of parent bias (3 of 24 infants chose the similar puppet more often) but did show patterns of side stability with 18 of 24 infants (75%; 13 on the right and 5 on the left) making a majority of their puppet selections (i.e., 80% or more of the choice trials) on the same side. Moreover, two thirds of parents reported their infants had no history with either foods. Results suggest factors other than innate preference account for infant puppet selections.