Navigation Links
Toddler Study Proves Humans Outsmart Apes
Date:9/6/2007

In 'social learning,' at least, preschoolers excelled

THURSDAY, Sept. 6 (HealthDay News) -- For those needing evidence that humans are brainier than the average ape, there's a new study showing that toddlers are better at "social learning," compared to adult primates.

When presented with a tube containing food or a toy, two-and-a-half-year-olds followed an experimenter's example to retrieve the prize, while the apes put all their energy towards simply biting or breaking the tube.

Humans differ from the great apes because their brains are about triple the size of their closest primate cousins. Human brains have also developed language, symbolic math and scientific reasoning skills.

The ability to learn by observing others enables human children to develop social and physical skills, say researchers reporting in the Sept. 7 issue of Science.

Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany studied 230 subjects, including 100 chimpanzees, 30 orangutans and 100 human children 2.5 years old. The participants were given the Primate Cognition Test Battery, which analyzes primate thinking and problem-solving in dealing with the physical and social world.

As part of one of the social learning tasks, the researchers demonstrated how to pop open a plastic tube to retrieve the food or toy inside. The children watched and copied the researcher; the apes attempted to break the tube or pull it apart with their teeth.

All of the subjects performed equally well in terms of the physical cognitive management of space, and in understanding concepts such as quantities and causality. However, the children were correct in three out of four of the social learning tests, while the two ape species were correct only one out of three times.

"We compared three species to determine which abilities and skills are distinctly human. The children were much better than the apes in understanding nonverbal communications, imitating another's solution to a problem and understanding the intentions of others," lead researcher Esther Herrmann said in a prepared statement. This is the first study to compare the performance of toddlers and apes on cognitive and physical tests.

The researchers chose to test human children at two and a half years old because that is when their physical skill level most closely resembles the skill level of a chimpanzee. The apes ranged between three and 21 years old.

According to the researchers, the results of the study support the theory that human social skills give humans an evolutionary edge. A second theory argues that humans differ in skill levels from apes as a result of being generally more intelligent.

More information

For more on early childhood development, head to the American Academy of Pediatrics.



-- Madeline Vann



SOURCE: American Association for the Advancement of Science, news release, Sept. 6, 2007


'/>"/>
Copyright©2007 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Toddlers stressed out
2. Stop Watching TV: Toddler Development Affected
3. Toddlers Have Respiratory Trouble When Sleeping With Their Face Up
4. Britain Toddlers To Receive Flu-Jab In Addition To The 21 Shots
5. A Toddler Succumbs To Death Due To HFM
6. Interactive Video, Better Teaching Aid For Toddlers
7. Sick Toddler Has Bone Marrow Transplantation
8. Toddlers Delayed Speech not Due to Parenting Faults
9. New Screening System For Early Detection Of Dental Caries in Toddlers
10. IQ of Toddlers Affected by Excess weight
11. Obesity Takes its Toll on IQ of Toddlers
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... 24, 2017 , ... Accordant Technology, a trusted IT solutions ... an analytics-first approach, layered with machine learning, that provides real-time visibility into the ... cloud to the edge. Through the new partnership, customers get the real-time situational ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... May 24, 2017 , ... Fiberstar, Inc., ... the food and beverage industry offers Citri-Fi®, a natural citrus fiber, to improve ... decision process. As a result, labels need to deliver simple, transparent and clear ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... , ... May 23, 2017 , ... Allegheny Health ... open The Alexis Joy D’Achille Center for Women’s Behavioral Health at West Penn ... in western Pennsylvania for women suffering from pregnancy-related depression. Construction of the Center ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... , ... May 23, 2017 , ... ... body for exercise professionals, is pleased to announce the organization’s Certified Strength Coach ... The NCSF Certified Strength Coach (CSC) program validates the competency of qualified candidates ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... York (PRWEB) , ... May 23, 2017 , ... ... LifeLabs, a leading equipment provider in the modern ART laboratory, to provide hands-on ... in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. , NextGen LifeLabs, a MedTech Group Purchasing vendor ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/18/2017)...  Bayer announced today that the latest research from ... the 53 rd Annual Meeting of the American ... in Chicago . ... liver and thyroid cancers, as well as lymphomas, and ... trial of copanlisib in patients with relapsed or refractory ...
(Date:5/11/2017)... , May 11, 2017  Thornhill Research ... has been awarded an $8,049,024 USD five-year, firm-fixed-priced, ... through the Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) ( ... Anesthesia Systems to administer general anesthesia to patients ... "The US Marine Corps have been ...
(Date:5/10/2017)... May 10, 2017 Radiology has become the ... costs have also spiraled to the number one ranking ... radiology than ever before as the most complete and ... patient with lower back pain an MRI may confirm ... for pain, resulting in entirely different treatment protocols.  In ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: