||What children do in spite of adults' hypotheses.
Investigated P. E. Bryant and T. Trabasso's (see record 1972-22661-001) findings that children under age 7 can understand and apply the idea of transitivity. It is suggested that alternative strategies not requiring the idea of transitivity are being used. 4 experiments were conducted using Ss aged 3 yrs 10 mo-4 yrs 6 mo. Exp I (n = 20) replicated Bryant and Trabasso's Exp II (no visual feedback); Ss were shown 5 colored sticks of decreasing lengths. Results are compatible with the previous ones, but it is suggested that the method used by the Ss did not depend on remembering the learned pairs, a fact which is difficult to interpret if the Ss were making transitive inferences. Exp II-IV (n = 40, 10, and 30, respectively) studied alternative strategies that Ss may be using. Sticks were presented in random rather than in ascending or descending order (Exp II). In Exp III, Ss were trained on 4 sticks and a 5th stick was introduced into the test phase and in Exp IV, only 2 sticks were presented in the training phase, but Ss were tested on 4 sticks. Results of these 3 experiments suggest that Ss used a labelling strategy in which no idea of relative length or order was needed but which is consistent with the findings of "transitivity" claimed by Bryant and Trabasso. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved)