loading page

The Role of Interest in Young Children's Retention of Words
  • +3
  • Lena Ackermann,
  • Meike Förster,
  • Juliane Schaarschmidt,
  • Robert Hepach,
  • Nivedita Mani,
  • Sarah Eiteljoerge
Lena Ackermann
Deutsches Primatenzentrum GmbH - Leibniz-Institut für Primatenforschung
Author Profile
Meike Förster
Georg-August-Universität Göttingen
Author Profile
Juliane Schaarschmidt
Georg-August-Universität Göttingen
Author Profile
Robert Hepach
Oxford University
Author Profile
Nivedita Mani
Georg-August-Universität Göttingen
Author Profile
Sarah Eiteljoerge
Georg-August-Universitat Gottingen

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

Author Profile


Children fast-map new words to their referents early on but do not show robust retention until much later. This paper examines whether children’s interest in a natural category relates to retention of newly learned words in that category. German-speaking 24-month-olds and 38-month-olds (n = 88, 41 female) were trained on novel word-object-associations from different categories. Pupillary arousal and parental reports served as indices of interest in the objects and categories presented. Recognition and retention were tested directly after exposure, five minutes later, and 24 hours later. Both younger and older children showed successful word-object recognition and retention. Furthermore, interest in the category modulates young children’s recognition and retention of newly learned word-object associations from semantic categories across ages.
22 Aug 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
22 Aug 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Major
29 Aug 20231st Revision Received
29 Aug 2023Assigned to Editor
29 Aug 2023Submission Checks Completed
08 Sep 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
08 Sep 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Major
12 Sep 20232nd Revision Received
12 Sep 2023Submission Checks Completed
12 Sep 2023Assigned to Editor
20 Sep 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
20 Sep 2023Editorial Decision: Accept