Investigating the impact of social cues in preschoolers' overimitation of humanoid robots
Vogel, A., Fuß, V.
Imitation serves both a social function (e.g., to interact with others) and a cognitive function (e.g., to learn new skills) and is a frequent behavior in the first years of life. Overimitation can be defined as the copying of both causally functional and non-functional actions shown by a model, which is often observed in children. Both, imitation and overimitation help children to quickly learn efficient behavior and social skills from their role models. It has been recently found that even robots' actions are copied by preschoolers when they show similar social cues and behaviour to humans (Schleihauf et al., 2019). In this study, we investigated whether preschoolers aged 5 to 6 over-imitate robots that are missing typical social cues implemented as the following: no animated eyes, no self-introduction and communication with a friendly voice. In the former study by Schleihauf (2019) children overimitate a robot showing those social cues. We hypothesized, that overimitation in preschoolers will decrease when the robot is missing the social cues listed above.
Over-Imitation, Preschoolers, Robot, Social Learning, Überimitation