The other-race effect in 3-year-old German and Cameroonian children

  • Recognizing individual faces is an important human ability that highly depends on experience. This is reflected in the so called other-race effect; adults are better at recognizing faces from their own ethnic group, while very young infants do not show this specialization yet. Two experiments examined whether 3-year-old children from two different cultural backgrounds show the other-race effect. In Experiment 1, German children (N = 41) were presented with a forced choice paradigm where they were asked to recognize female Caucasian or African faces. In Experiment 2, 3-year-olds from Cameroon (N = 66) participated in a similar task using the same stimulus material. In both cultures the other-race effect was present; children were better at recognizing individual faces from their own ethnic group. In addition, German children performed at a higher overall level of accuracy than Cameroonians. The results are discussed in relation to cultural aspects in particular.

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Author:Janina Suhrke, Claudia Freitag, Bettina Lamm, Johanna Teiser, Ina Fassbender, Sonja Poloczek, Manuel Teubert, Isabel A. Vöhringer, Heidi Keller, Monika KnopfORCiDGND, Arnold LohausORCiDGND, Gudrun Schwarzer
Pubmed Id:
Parent Title (English):Frontiers in psychology
Publisher:Frontiers Research Foundation
Place of publication:Lausanne
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2014/03/18
Date of first Publication:2014/03/18
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2014/04/02
Tag:Cameroon; Germany; children; face recognition; other-race effect
Issue:Article 198
Page Number:7
Copyright © 2014 Suhrke, Freitag, Lamm, Teiser, Fassbender, Poloczek, Teubert, Vöhringer, Keller, Knopf, Lohaus and Schwarzer. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Institutes:Psychologie und Sportwissenschaften / Psychologie
Dewey Decimal Classification:1 Philosophie und Psychologie / 15 Psychologie / 150 Psychologie
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung 3.0