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Scholars Day: April 7, 2010

The Effect of Incentives on Children's Overconfidence

Previous research has found that young children are persistently overconfident in their predictions of their own abilities (e.g. Lipko, Dunlosky, & Merriman, 2009). The current experiment investigates the role of incentives in children’s predictive accuracy across five trials on a picture recall task. On each trial, preschoolers are asked to predict how many pictures out of ten they will be able to recall after all of the pictures have been covered. Children are randomly assigned to one of two groups: incentive or non-incentive. Both groups are given identical task instructions which are intended to focus children’s attention on being accurate predictors. However, children in the incentive group are also offered a prize for giving accurate performance predictions. Children in the non-incentive group are not offered a prize. Incentives are expected to increase children’s predictive accuracy across trials.

Presenter: Moria Story (Graduate Student)
Topic: Psychology
Location: 123 Hartwell
Time: 11:15 am (Session II)