Setting Goals to Switch Between Tasks: Effect of Cue Transparency on Children's Cognitive Flexibility


  • Chevalier Nicolas
  • Blaye Agnès

document type



Three experiments examined the difficulty of translating cues into verbal representations of task goals by varying the degree of cue transparency (auditor), transparent cues, visual transparent cues. visual arbitrary cues) in the Advanced Dimensional Change Card Sort. which requires switching, between color- and shape-sorting, rules on the basis Of Cues. Experiment I showed that 5- and 6-year-old children's performance improved as a function Of Cue transparency. Experiment 2 yielded the same pattern of results and showed that cue transparency effects cannot be accounted for by cue formal only. Finally. Experiment 3 examined the effect Of Cue transparency in 7- and 9-year-olds and adults. The effect decreased over age for accuracy performance but not for latencies. suggesting that under some conditions, the difficulty of Cue translation can still be observed in individuals whose inner speech is efficient. overall, these findings showed that goal setting Substantially contributes, to children's flexible behaviors and continues to influence adults performance.

more information