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  Children’s emotion perception in context: The role of caregiver touch and relationship quality

Thrasher, C., & Grossmann, T. (2021). Children’s emotion perception in context: The role of caregiver touch and relationship quality. Emotion, 21(2), 273-282. doi:10.1037/emo0000704.

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 Creators:
Thrasher, Cat, Author
Grossmann, Tobias1, Author              
Affiliations:
1Department Neuropsychology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, ou_634551              

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 Abstract: From early in development, attention to emotional facial expressions is biased toward threat. We examined whether caregiver availability affects children's emotion perception and possibly reduces threat bias. In 3 experiments, 4- and 5-year-old children were asked to detect threatening (angry) and nonthreatening (happy) facial expressions on a touch screen. Children completed the emotion detection task either with or without their caregiver sitting next to them on a bench, first using a between-subjects design where each child completed the task once (Experiment 1; N = 40) and then using a within-subjects design where each child completed the task twice (Experiment 2; N = 20). In Experiments 1 and 2, mere caregiver presence had no effect on children's emotion detection or threat bias. In Experiment 3, we increased the salience of caregiver presence by having children complete the task while holding hands with their caregiver (Experiment 3; N = 45). In dyads reporting high quality child-caregiver relationships, handholding facilitated detection of happy faces and significantly reduced children's threat bias. These findings suggest that caregiver touch impacts emotion perception in children as a function of relationship quality and that caregiver context plays a role in shaping children's responses to their social environment.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2019-11-212021-03
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: -
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 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Type: -
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1037/emo0000704
Other: epub 2019
PMID: 31750706
 Degree: -

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Title: Emotion
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: Washington, DC : American Psychological Association
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 21 (2) Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 273 - 282 Identifier: ISSN: 1528-3542
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/1528-3542