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The goal trumps the means: highlighting goals is more beneficial than highlighting means in means-end training

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Standard

The goal trumps the means : highlighting goals is more beneficial than highlighting means in means-end training. / Gerson, Sarah; Woodward, Amanda .

In: Infancy, Vol. 18, No. 2, 04.2013, p. 289-302.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Harvard

Gerson, S & Woodward, A 2013, 'The goal trumps the means: highlighting goals is more beneficial than highlighting means in means-end training', Infancy, vol. 18, no. 2, pp. 289-302. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1532-7078.2012.00112.x

APA

Gerson, S., & Woodward, A. (2013). The goal trumps the means: highlighting goals is more beneficial than highlighting means in means-end training. Infancy, 18(2), 289-302. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1532-7078.2012.00112.x

Vancouver

Gerson S, Woodward A. The goal trumps the means: highlighting goals is more beneficial than highlighting means in means-end training. Infancy. 2013 Apr;18(2):289-302. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1532-7078.2012.00112.x

Author

Gerson, Sarah ; Woodward, Amanda . / The goal trumps the means : highlighting goals is more beneficial than highlighting means in means-end training. In: Infancy. 2013 ; Vol. 18, No. 2. pp. 289-302.

Bibtex - Download

@article{4a227ace901b4f3fbf10b3eccd7f34d0,
title = "The goal trumps the means: highlighting goals is more beneficial than highlighting means in means-end training",
abstract = "Means-end actions are an early-emerging form of problem solving. These actions require initiating initial behaviors with a goal in mind. In this study, we explored the origins of 8-month-old infants{\textquoteright} means-end action production using a cloth-pulling training paradigm. We examined whether highlighting the goal (toy) or the means (cloth) was more valuable for learning to perform a well-organized means-end action. Infants were given the opportunity to both practice cloth-pulling and view modeling of the action performed by an adult throughout the session. Infants saw either the same toy or the same cloth in successive trials, so that the goal or means were highlighted prior to modeling of the action. All infants improved throughout the session regardless of which aspect of the event was highlighted. Beyond this general improvement, repetition of goals supported more rapid learning and more sustained learning than did repetition of means. These findings provide novel evidence that, at the origins of means-end action production, emphasizing the goal that structures an action facilitates the learning of new means-end actions.",
keywords = "Means-end actions, Infant cognition, Goals, Problem-solving, Cognitive development",
author = "Sarah Gerson and Amanda Woodward",
note = "This work was partially supported by a grant to the second author from NICHD (HD35707).",
year = "2013",
month = apr,
doi = "10.1111/j.1532-7078.2012.00112.x",
language = "English",
volume = "18",
pages = "289--302",
journal = "Infancy",
issn = "1525-0008",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "2",

}

RIS (suitable for import to EndNote) - Download

TY - JOUR

T1 - The goal trumps the means

T2 - highlighting goals is more beneficial than highlighting means in means-end training

AU - Gerson, Sarah

AU - Woodward, Amanda

N1 - This work was partially supported by a grant to the second author from NICHD (HD35707).

PY - 2013/4

Y1 - 2013/4

N2 - Means-end actions are an early-emerging form of problem solving. These actions require initiating initial behaviors with a goal in mind. In this study, we explored the origins of 8-month-old infants’ means-end action production using a cloth-pulling training paradigm. We examined whether highlighting the goal (toy) or the means (cloth) was more valuable for learning to perform a well-organized means-end action. Infants were given the opportunity to both practice cloth-pulling and view modeling of the action performed by an adult throughout the session. Infants saw either the same toy or the same cloth in successive trials, so that the goal or means were highlighted prior to modeling of the action. All infants improved throughout the session regardless of which aspect of the event was highlighted. Beyond this general improvement, repetition of goals supported more rapid learning and more sustained learning than did repetition of means. These findings provide novel evidence that, at the origins of means-end action production, emphasizing the goal that structures an action facilitates the learning of new means-end actions.

AB - Means-end actions are an early-emerging form of problem solving. These actions require initiating initial behaviors with a goal in mind. In this study, we explored the origins of 8-month-old infants’ means-end action production using a cloth-pulling training paradigm. We examined whether highlighting the goal (toy) or the means (cloth) was more valuable for learning to perform a well-organized means-end action. Infants were given the opportunity to both practice cloth-pulling and view modeling of the action performed by an adult throughout the session. Infants saw either the same toy or the same cloth in successive trials, so that the goal or means were highlighted prior to modeling of the action. All infants improved throughout the session regardless of which aspect of the event was highlighted. Beyond this general improvement, repetition of goals supported more rapid learning and more sustained learning than did repetition of means. These findings provide novel evidence that, at the origins of means-end action production, emphasizing the goal that structures an action facilitates the learning of new means-end actions.

KW - Means-end actions

KW - Infant cognition

KW - Goals

KW - Problem-solving

KW - Cognitive development

U2 - 10.1111/j.1532-7078.2012.00112.x

DO - 10.1111/j.1532-7078.2012.00112.x

M3 - Article

VL - 18

SP - 289

EP - 302

JO - Infancy

JF - Infancy

SN - 1525-0008

IS - 2

ER -

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