Early Joint Attention and its Influence on Socio-Emotional Development and Language Skills

dc.contributorYoshida, Hanako
dc.contributorSun, Lichao
dc.contributor.authorMacias Zuniga, Maria Jose
dc.contributor.authorPerkovich, Elizabeth
dc.description.abstractEarly experiences of joint attention (JA) which infants and their social partner attend to regions of interest have been shown to predict vocabulary (e.g., Salo, 2018) and socio-emotional (SE) development (e.g., Aitken et al., 2020). These studies use small time intervals of 1-2 years between visits, and JA abilities are measured through parental reports or observed play, which lack objective measurement. This has led to a lack of knowledge about how socially-coordinated gaze behaviors (JA) during toddlerhood (1-2 years) predicts later vocabulary and SE development during preschool (4-5 years), and the documented relationships rely on subjective measures of JA. To characterize the role of IJA and RJA experiences in a social context on later vocabulary/SE development, we asked 14 parent-child dyads to participate in an object play session during their first visit (T1) wearing head-mounted eye trackers in which we measured the frequency and duration of IJA and RJA from the dyad's egocentric perspectives. During their second visit (T2), parents completed the Ages & Stages Questionnaire: Socio-Emotional (ASQ:SE-2; Squires et al., 2015) and children completed the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (PPVT-4; Dunn & Dunn, 2007) and the Expressive Vocabulary Test (EVT-2; Williams, 2007). The results showed a significant relation between IJA duration and PPVT-4 standard scores (p = .039) and between RJA duration and ASQ:SE-2 social-emotional scores (p = .013). The results are predictive of children's later vocabulary and social-emotional development, which are critical to school readiness skills (Martoccio et al., 2014).
dc.description.departmentPsychology, Department of
dc.description.departmentHonors College
dc.relation.ispartofSummer Undergraduate Research Fellowship
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dc.titleEarly Joint Attention and its Influence on Socio-Emotional Development and Language Skills


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