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Korean J Child Stud > Volume 12(2); 1991 > Article
Korean Journal of Child Studies 1991;12(2): 37-50.
취학전 아동의 질병의 원인에 대한 이해
Preschool Children's Conceptions of Illness
Hyo Soon You
The purpose of this study was to assess preschool children`s understanding of contagion and their use of immanent justice explanation for illness and accidents, 124 children (66 four-year-olds and 58 five-year-olds) were interviewed individually by two female interviewers. The data were analyzed by χ² and correlation. Preliminary analyses revealed no significant sex and age differences: Therefore, the data were collapsed across sex and age for all further analyses. The results showed that preschool children have a concept of contagion as a cause of illness, and they understand the effect of distance between people on the likelihood of transmitting contagious ailments. They overextend the concept of contagion to inappropriate ailments: that is, to noncontagious illnesses and to accidents. They employed immanent justice explanations for all illnesses (contagious and noncontagious) and accidents. The use of immanent justice was inversely related to application of the concept of contagion.
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