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Group Influences on Engaging Self-Control: Children Delay Gratification and Value It More When Their In-Group Delays and Their Out-Group Doesn't.

08:00 EDT 1st April 2018 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Group Influences on Engaging Self-Control: Children Delay Gratification and Value It More When Their In-Group Delays and Their Out-Group Doesn't."

Self-control emerges in a rich sociocultural context. Do group norms around self-control influence the degree to which children use it? We tested this possibility by assigning 3- to 5-year-old children to a group and manipulating their beliefs about in-group and out-group behavior on the classic marshmallow task. Across two experiments, children waited longer for two marshmallows when they believed that their in-group waited and their out-group did not, compared with children who believed that their in-group did not wait and their out-group did. Group behavior influenced children to wait more, not less, as indicated by comparisons with children in a control condition who were assigned to a group but received no information about either groups' delay behavior (Experiment 1). Children also subsequently valued delaying gratification more if their in-group waited and their out-group did not (Experiment 2). Childhood self-control behavior and related developmental outcomes may be shaped by group norms around self-control, which may be an optimal target for interventions.

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This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Psychological science
ISSN: 1467-9280
Pages: 956797617747367

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