British Journal of Developmental Psychology

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Volume 2 Issue 2 (June 1984), Pages 95-190

Will infants search when ‘no toy’ is hidden? A study of implicit assumptions about the development of object permanence (pages 179-188)

In the Piagetian tradition, presence or absence of a sense of object permanence is inferred from whether an infant does or does not search when an object is occluded. This line of reasoning entails an implicit assumption, i.e. an infant will not search if no object is seen to disappear. This assumption was evaluated in three studies of 9‐ and 12‐month‐old infants' responses to ‘hiding’ toy and ‘no toy’ in different orders in one and two positions. The infants did not search for ‘no toy’ when it preceded toy hiding, but they did search for ‘no toy’ when it followed ‘toy’ under some conditions.

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