Examining the association between familism and social cognition across childhood

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Samantha Alvarado (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Jasmine DeJesus

Abstract: Children’s social preferences can be influenced by several factors, including gender, age, and race. However, a potential factor that has largely remained unstudied in research on the development of social cognition is that of cultural concepts like familism. Past research has indicated that in early childhood, children may begin to manifest familial values in the form of behavior and are developing a sense of obligation and loyalty towards the family. In the present study, I examined whether 3- to 13-year-old children base their social preferences on familism values. Participants were introduced to a protagonist who has one cookie to share with two characters: either a family member (e.g., a sibling or parent) or a non-family member (e.g., a friend from school or stranger). Subsequently, children were asked with whom the protagonist should share the one cookie. I expected children whose parents scored higher on a short familism scale to prefer sharing with family members. Results did not reveal a significant effect of parent familism on children’s family selections, yet there was a significant difference in family selections by ethnicity. Hispanic children were more likely to guide the protagonist to share with family members compared to non-Hispanic children. Further, results revealed a significant effect of age: with age, children were more likely to guide the protagonist to share with family members. These findings offered insight into the influence of familism and culture on children’s social cognition. Future research should examine potential moderators and factors that could have influenced these results.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2023
Childhood, Familism, Resource distribution, Sharing, Social cognition
Families $x Psychological aspects
Social perception in children
Sharing in children

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