Various indexes have been proposed to mark when a child is on the verge of acquiring new knowledge. This article described a new method for indexing this point of transition, which is based on the specificity of children's verbal explanations. The degree to which children were specific in their verbal explanations was related to whether they benefited from instruction. In particular, children who were vague in their explanations (i.e., less specific) benefited from instruction more than children who were explicit in their explanations (i.e., more specific). This index provides insights into the child's mental state prior to acquiring new knowledge.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Life-span and Life-course Studies