Which one of the following, if true, would most call into question the psychologists' interpretation of the experimen...

Ryan on September 17, 2019

Why is C correct? Why is D incorrect?


1 Reply

Skylar on October 13, 2019

@Ryan-Mahibir Happy to help.

The question is asking which answer choice would most challenge the psychologists' interpretation of the experiments with children in lines 10-16.

First, let's remind ourselves what this interpretation was. We see that the psychologists interpreted the results to mean that "one's awareness of ones own thoughts is every bit as inferential as one's awareness of another person's thoughts" (lines 14-16) and that "thoughts are unobservable entities" (lines 17-18). They concluded this from the fact that children did not correctly describe the thoughts that they held.

(C) states "the limited language skills possessed by young children make it difficult for them to accurately communicate their thoughts." This offers an alternate explanation for the children's inability to describe their thoughts, and therefore calls into the question the psychologists' conclusion. Instead of "thoughts being unobservable" being the reason why the kids could not explain their thoughts, answer choice (C) suggests that the kids knew their thoughts but simply did not have the vocabulary to express them. This challenges the given interpretation and is correct.

(D) states "most young children cannot be expected to know the difference between direct and indirect access to one's thoughts." This does not weaken the psychologists' interpretation, as it is irrelevant to experiment. The experiment does not require nor test if the children are aware of different levels of access to their thoughts. Instead, the psychologists evaluate the level of access based on the children's descriptions, so it does not matter if children know the difference between direct and indirect access to thoughts or not. Because of this, (D) is incorrect.

Does this make sense? Please let us know if you have any additional questions!