The Relationship between Theory of Mind and Moral Development in Preschool Children

  • Carolina Piazzarollo Loureiro Universidade Federal do Espirito Santo
  • Debora de Hollanda Souza Universidade Federal de Sao Carlos

Abstract

The aim of the present study was to investigate the relationship between theory of mind and moral judgment (based on intention and based on motive) in a sample of Brazilian preschool children. Twenty-four 4- and 5-year olds were assessed in theory of mind and moral reasoning tasks. Although the correlation between performances in the two types of task was not significant, some important effects were found: participants were better at judging intentional behaviors than accidental ones and 5-year-olds performed better than 4-year-olds in the moral reasoning task based on motive. These results suggest that more sophisticated moral reasoning is associated with the capacity to differentiate intentional and non-intentional actions as well as to identify the underlying motives of human action.

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Published
2013-04-01
How to Cite
Loureiro, C., & Souza, D. (2013). The Relationship between Theory of Mind and Moral Development in Preschool Children. Paidéia (Ribeirão Preto), 23(54), 93-101. https://doi.org/10.1590/1982-43272354201311
Section
Articles