Summary: Developmental Science 10:1 (2007), pp 4853 DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-7687.2007.00563.x
© 2007 The Author. Journal compilation © 2007 Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 9600 Garsington Road, Oxford OX4 2DQ, UK and
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Blackwell Publishing Ltd
What's in a look?
Richard N. Aslin
Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, University of Rochester, USA
The most common behavioral technique used to study infant perception, cognition, language, and social development is some
variant of looking time. Since its inception as a reliable method in the late 1950s, a tremendous increase in knowledge about
infant competencies has been gained by inferences made from measures of looking time. Here we examine the logic, utility, and
future prospects for further gains in our understanding of infant cognition from the use of looking time measures.
Consider the following scenario. Three adults enter a
crowded room filled with volunteers and paid staff mem-
bers who are waiting for a political candidate to emerge
from behind a curtain and make either a victory or a
concession speech. Person A is a security guard assigned
to protect the candidate. Person B is the candidate's
spouse. Person C is a member of the opposition party.