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Vicarious learning and the development of fears in childhood.
Behav Res Ther. 2007 Nov; 45(11):2616-27.BR

Abstract

Vicarious learning has long been assumed to be an indirect pathway to fear; however, there is only retrospective evidence that children acquire fears in this way. In two experiments, children (aged 7-9 years) were exposed to pictures of novel animals paired with pictures of either scared, happy or no facial expressions to see the impact on their fear cognitions and avoidance behavior about the animals. In Experiment 1, directly (self-report) and indirectly measured (affective priming) fear attitudes towards the animals changed congruent with the facial expressions with which these were paired. The indirectly measured fear beliefs persisted up to 3 months. Experiment 2 showed that children took significantly longer to approach a box they believed to contain an animal they had previously seen paired with scared faces. These results support theories of fear acquisition that suppose that vicarious learning affects cognitive and behavioral fear emotion, and suggest possibilities for interventions to weaken fear acquired in this way.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Psychology, University of Sussex, Falmer, Brighton, East Sussex BN1 9QH, UK. C.Askew@kingston.ac.ukNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

17651688

Citation

Askew, Chris, and Andy P. Field. "Vicarious Learning and the Development of Fears in Childhood." Behaviour Research and Therapy, vol. 45, no. 11, 2007, pp. 2616-27.
Askew C, Field AP. Vicarious learning and the development of fears in childhood. Behav Res Ther. 2007;45(11):2616-27.
Askew, C., & Field, A. P. (2007). Vicarious learning and the development of fears in childhood. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 45(11), 2616-27.
Askew C, Field AP. Vicarious Learning and the Development of Fears in Childhood. Behav Res Ther. 2007;45(11):2616-27. PubMed PMID: 17651688.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Vicarious learning and the development of fears in childhood. AU - Askew,Chris, AU - Field,Andy P, Y1 - 2007/06/22/ PY - 2007/03/23/received PY - 2007/06/13/revised PY - 2007/06/15/accepted PY - 2007/7/27/pubmed PY - 2008/5/2/medline PY - 2007/7/27/entrez SP - 2616 EP - 27 JF - Behaviour research and therapy JO - Behav Res Ther VL - 45 IS - 11 N2 - Vicarious learning has long been assumed to be an indirect pathway to fear; however, there is only retrospective evidence that children acquire fears in this way. In two experiments, children (aged 7-9 years) were exposed to pictures of novel animals paired with pictures of either scared, happy or no facial expressions to see the impact on their fear cognitions and avoidance behavior about the animals. In Experiment 1, directly (self-report) and indirectly measured (affective priming) fear attitudes towards the animals changed congruent with the facial expressions with which these were paired. The indirectly measured fear beliefs persisted up to 3 months. Experiment 2 showed that children took significantly longer to approach a box they believed to contain an animal they had previously seen paired with scared faces. These results support theories of fear acquisition that suppose that vicarious learning affects cognitive and behavioral fear emotion, and suggest possibilities for interventions to weaken fear acquired in this way. SN - 0005-7967 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/17651688/Vicarious_learning_and_the_development_of_fears_in_childhood_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0005-7967(07)00123-4 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -