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Cultural Variation in Triadic Infant-Caregiver Object Exploration.


Two studies examined the extent to which the type of triadic interaction pervasive in Western populations (i.e., shared visual attention and ostensive pedagogical cues) was representative of infant-caregiver object exploration in a non-Western indigenous community. Caregivers in the United States and Vanuatu interacted with infants and a novel object for 3 min. In Study 1 (N = 116, Mage  = 29.05), Ni-Van caregivers used more physical triadic engagement and U.S. caregivers used more visual triadic engagement. In Study 2 (N = 80, Mage  = 29.91), U.S. caregivers were more likely than Ni-Van caregivers to transmit an action and to use visual cues while interacting with their child. These studies demonstrate that the Western model of early social learning is not universal.

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