Episode 1

It's Innate Ep. 1: Mechanisms all the way down


4 July 2020

1 hr 39 mins 55 secs

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About this Episode

During the first half of their very first episode, Candy and Deon introduce themselves, discuss why they chose to start this podcast, and share why they'd even dare to name their show the It's Innate! podcast given the longstanding and often contentious debate in the developmental literature surrounding this term.

During the second half of the episode, Candy and Deon discuss Candy's research with young children. This research examined the role of social comparison on children's self-evaluations. Spoiler alert: It turns out that, to everyone's absolute surprise, children very much dislike being outperformed by novices. Following this discussion, Candy and Deon turn their attention to Deon's recent work in which he examined how a novel mechanism, called second-order correlation learning, might support young children's causal inferences.

Candy and Deon conclude by discussing how second-order correlation learning can be leveraged to support children's developing theory of mind, on the one hand, and to mitigate possible racial bias in children, on the other hand.


Benton, D. T., Rakison, D. H., & Sobel, D. M. (2020, April 15). When correlation equals causation: A behavioral and computational account of second-order correlation learning in children. Link to paper

Lapan, C., & Boseovski, J. J. (2017). When peer performance matters: Effects of expertise and traits on children's self‐evaluations after social comparison. Child development, 88(6), 1860-1872. Link to paper