Associations between young children's emotion attributions and prediction of outcome in differing social situations


Correspondence should be addressed to Areana R. Eivers, Department of Psychology, University of Oslo, Postboks 1094, Blindern, 0317 Oslo, Norway (e-mail:


Associations between young children's attributions of emotion at different points in a story, and with regard to their own prediction about the story's outcome, were investigated using two hypothetical scenarios of social and emotional challenge (social entry and negative event). First grade children (N=250) showed an understanding that emotions are tied to situational cues by varying the emotions they attributed both between and within scenarios. Furthermore, emotions attributed to the main protagonist at the beginning of the scenarios were differentially associated with children's prediction of a positive or negative outcome and with the valence of the emotion attributed at the end of the scenario. Gender differences in responses to some items were also found.