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Social Preference in Preschoolers: Effects of Morphological Self-Similarity and Familiarity

Richter, N., Tiddeman, B., & Haun, D. (2016). Social Preference in Preschoolers: Effects of Morphological Self-Similarity and Familiarity. PLoS One, 11(1): e0145443. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0145443.
Adults prefer to interact with others that are similar to themselves. Even slight facial self-resemblance can elicit trust towards strangers. Here we investigate if preschoolers at the age of 5 years already use facial self-resemblance when they make social judgments about others. We found that, in the absence of any additional knowledge about prospective peers, children preferred those who look subtly like themselves over complete strangers. Thus, subtle morphological similarities trigger social preferences well before adulthood.
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The Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics is an institute of the German Max Planck Society. Our mission is to undertake basic research into the psychological,social and biological foundations of language. The goal is to understand how our minds and brains process language, how language interacts with other aspects of mind, and how we can learn languages of quite different types.

The institute is situated on the campus of the Radboud University. We participate in the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, and have particularly close ties to that institute's Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging. We also participate in the Centre for Language Studies. A joint graduate school, the IMPRS in Language Sciences, links the Donders Institute, the CLS and the MPI.

 

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