Tanya Broesch

Tanya Broesch
Simon Fraser University · Department of Psychology

PhD Emory University

About

30
Publications
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919
Citations

Publications

Publications (30)
Article
Humans are extraordinary in the extent to which we rely on cumulative culture to act upon and make sense of our environment. Teaching is one social learning process thought to be fundamental to the evolution of cumulative culture as a means of adaptation in our species. However, the frequency of teaching and how we teach are known to vary across hu...
Article
Teaching likely evolved in humans to facilitate the faithful transmission of complex tasks. As the oldest evidenced hunting technology, spear hunting requires acquiring several complex physical and cognitive competencies. In this study, we used observational and interview data collected among BaYaka foragers (Republic of the Congo) to test the pred...
Article
Full-text available
This paper provides a roadmap for engaging in cross-cultural, developmental research in practical, ethical, and community-engaged ways. To cultivate the flexibility necessary for conducting cross-cultural research, we structure our roadmap as a series of questions that each research program might consider prior to embarking on cross-cultural examin...
Article
Full-text available
Tool innovation has played a crucial role in human adaptation. Yet, this capacity seems to arise late in development. Before 8 years of age, many children struggle to solve the hook task, a common measure of tool innovation that requires modification of a straight pipe cleaner into a hook to extract a prize. Whether these findings are generalizable...
Article
Humans are selective social learners. In a cultural landscape with many potential models, learners must balance the cost associated with learning from successful models with learning from accessible ones. Using structured interviews, we investigate the model selection biases of Congolese BaYaka adolescent boys learning to hunt with spears (n p 24;...
Article
Infant‐directed speech (IDS) is phonetically distinct from adult‐directed speech (ADS): It is typically considered to have special prosody—like higher pitch, and slower speaking rates—as well as unique speech sound properties, e.g. more breathy, hyperarticulated, and/or variable consonant and vowel articulation. These phonetic features are widely o...
Preprint
Full-text available
This paper provides a roadmap for engaging in cross-cultural, developmental research in practical, ethical and community-engaged ways. To cultivate the flexibility necessary for conducting cross-cultural research, we structure our roadmap as a series of questions that each research program might consider prior to embarking on cross-cultural examina...
Article
Mirror self-recognition (MSR) is considered to be the benchmark of objective self-awareness-the ability to think about oneself. Cross-cultural research showed that there are systematic differences in toddlers' MSR abilities between 18 and 24 months. Understanding whether these differences result from systematic variation in early social experiences...
Article
Full-text available
We examine the opportunities children have for interacting with others and the extent to which they are the focus of others’ visual attention in five societies where extended family communities are the norm. We compiled six video-recorded datasets (two from one society) collected by a team of anthropologists and psychologists conducting long-term r...
Article
Full-text available
Aspects of human life history and cognition, such as our long childhoods and extensive use of teaching, theoretically evolved to facilitate the acquisition of complex tasks. The present paper empirically examines the relationship between subsistence task difficulty and age of acquisition, rates of teaching, and rates of oblique transmission among H...
Article
Full-text available
The intensifying pace of research based on cross-cultural studies in the social sciences necessitates a discussion of the unique challenges of multi-sited research. Given an increasing demand for social scientists to expand their data collection beyond WEIRD (Western, educated, industrialized, rich and democratic) populations, there is an urgent ne...
Article
We examined infant activity level and attention in 45 eight‐month‐old infants (mean age 8.8, SD = 2.07) living in two diverse socio‐cultural contexts: rural island societies in the South Pacific and urban Western societies in North America. Infants and mothers were observed for 10 minutes in a face‐to‐face interaction and later coded for the freque...
Preprint
Full-text available
The intensifying pace of research based on cross-cultural studies in the social sciences necessitates a discussion of the unique challenges of multi-sited research. Given an increasing demand for social scientists to expand their data collection beyond WEIRD (western, educated, industrialized, rich, and democratic) populations, there is an urgent n...
Preprint
Aspects of human life history and cognition, such as our long childhoods and extensive use of teaching, theoretically evolved to facilitate the acquisition of complex tasks. Using interviews conducted with Hadza and BaYaka foragers from Tanzania and the Republic of Congo, the present paper empirically examined the relationship between subsistence t...
Article
Full-text available
Recent studies have proposed that social norms play a key role in motivating human cooperation and in explaining the unique scale and cultural diversity of our prosociality. However, there have been few studies that directly link social norms to the form, development and variation in prosocial behaviour across societies. In a cross-cultural study o...
Article
Full-text available
Culture is a human universal, yet it is a source of variation in human psychology, behaviour and development. Developmental researchers are now expanding the geographical scope of research to include populations beyond relatively wealthy Western communities. However, culture and context still play a secondary role in the theoretical grounding of de...
Article
Full-text available
Humans are unique in their propensity for helping. Not only do we help others in need by reacting to their requests, we also help proactively by assisting in the absence of a request. Proactive helping requires the actor to detect the need for help, recognize the intention of the other, and remedy the situation. Very little is known about the devel...
Data
Verbal script for reactive and proactive helping in English and Bislama. (SAV)
Article
Humans are unique in their propensity to intentionally instruct and subsequently learn a wide range of information from others. We investigated when and how young children become socially resourceful in using others’ expertise, and whether the early propensity to request for help varies across diverse societies. We tested and compared 44 two- to fo...
Article
When speaking to infants, mothers often alter their speech compared to how they speak to adults, but findings for fathers are mixed. This study examined interactions (N = 30) between fathers and infants (Mage ± SD = 7.8 ± 4.3 months) in a small-scale society in Vanuatu and two urban societies in North America. Fundamental frequency (F0 ) and speech...
Article
The first relationship between an infant and her caregiver, typically the mother, lays the foundation for cognitive, social, and emotional development. Maternal responsiveness and affect mirroring have been studied extensively in Western societies yet very few studies have systematically examined these caregiving features in non-Western settings. S...
Article
Full-text available
Humans are extraordinarily prosocial, and research conducted primarily in North America indicates that giving to others is emotionally rewarding. To examine whether the hedonic benefits of giving represent a universal feature of human behavior, we extended upon previous cross-cultural examinations by investigating whether inhabitants of a small-sca...
Article
Full-text available
When speaking to infants, adults typically alter the acoustic properties of their speech in a variety of ways compared with how they speak to other adults; for example, they use higher pitch, increased pitch range, more pitch variability, and slower speech rate. Research shows that these vocal changes happen similarly across industrialized populati...
Article
Full-text available
The psychological capacity to recognize that others may hold and act on false beliefs has been proposed to reflect an evolved, species-typical adaptation for social reasoning in humans; however, controversy surrounds the developmental timing and universality of this trait. Cross-cultural studies using elicited-response tasks indicate that the age a...
Article
The range of symbols that children treat as object names narrows over the course of development as children accrue more experience with and exposure to language. By two years of age, children no longer treat gestures as object labels. Here we investigate the source of this new-found failure and ask whether it stems primarily from a failure to form...
Article
Self-recognition by 86 children (14-52 months) was assessed using the mirror mark test in two different social contexts. In the classic mirror task condition, only the child was marked prior to mirror exposure (Classic condition). In the social norm condition, the child, experimenter, and accompanying parent were marked prior to the child's mirror...
Article
Full-text available
Western children first show signs of mirror self-recognition (MSR) from 18 to 24 months of age, the benchmark index of emerging self-concept. Such signs include self-oriented behaviors while looking at the mirror to touch or remove a mark surreptitiously placed on the child’s face. The authors attempted to replicate this finding across cultures usi...
Article
Full-text available
This research investigates 3- and 5-year-olds' relative fairness in distributing small collections of even or odd numbers of more or less desirable candies, either with an adult experimenter or between two dolls. The authors compare more than 200 children from around the world, growing up in seven highly contrasted cultural and economic contexts, f...

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