Children's sensitivity to circular explanations

The ability to evaluate the quality of explanations is an essential part of children’s intellectual growth. Explanations can be faulty in structural ways such as when they are circular. A circular explanation reiterates the question as if it were an explanation rather than providing any new information. Two experiments (N = 77) examined children’s preferences when faced with circular and noncircular explanations. The results demonstrate that a preference for noncircular explanations is present, albeit in a fragile form, by 5 or 6 years of age and that it appears robustly by 10 years of age. Thus, the ability to evaluate the quality of explanations based on structural grounds appears to develop rapidly during the elementary school years. Ó 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 22,675
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
David Pineda (2011). Non-Committal Causal Explanations. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 24 (2):147-170.
Christopher Pincock (2011). Mathematical Explanations of the Rainbow. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 42 (1):13-22.
Rob Vanderbeeken (2006). Can Intentional and Functional Explanations of Actions Coexist? The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 9:143-147.
Stephen Andrew Butterfill (2010). Children's Selective Learning From Others. Review of Philosophy and Psychology 1 (4):551-561.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

18 ( #226,590 of 2,259,840 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

2 ( #293,948 of 2,259,840 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.