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Cognition and character traits as determinants of young children’s behaviour in traffic situations

  • Valdimar Briem
  • Hans Bengtsson
Publiceringsår: 2000
Språk: Engelska
Sidor: 492-505
Publikation/Tidskrift/Serie: International Journal of Behavioral Development
Volym: 24
Nummer: 4
Dokumenttyp: Artikel i tidskrift
Förlag: SAGE Publications Inc.


Young children, 3 to 6 years’ old, were observed in two situations: (1) a traffic model, where they used dolls to enact the movements of two children on the way to and from day care; and (2) as they crossed a lightly trafficked, minor road in a situation analogous to that in the model. Atotal of 131 children participated. All were tested in the model situation (a), both on understanding of safety and safety devices and on road-crossing behaviour. The latter was seen as a task consisting of three components (i) using a zebra crossing, (ii) stopping at the curb, and (iii) looking for cars. Asubgroup of 47 children was tested on three character traits, activity, distraction, and impulsivity. Another subgroup of 45 children participated in the roadside situation (b). The results show that although both age and understanding were important predictors of appropriate behaviour in both traffic situations, the behaviour components were differentially related to these factors. Of the character traits, impulsivity was found to be reliably related to traffic behaviour.


  • Psychology


  • ISSN: 1464-0651

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