Audrey Milam

Student NameAudrey Milam
Faculty Mentor NameJeffrey Farrar, PhD
CollegeCollege of Liberal Arts and Sciences
MajorPsychology with an emphasis in Behavior Analysis and Education Sciences
Research InterestsChildhood development, theory of mind, lying, and parenting styles
Academic AwardsDean’s List 2018-2019, University Scholars Program 2020
Hobbies and InterestsEducation, research, reading, volunteering, and baking

Research Project

Parenting Styles, Theory of Mind, and Lying Behavior in Preschoolers?

Although we are taught not to lie from a very young age, it is still a common behavior across individuals. Lying is a behavior that has been heavily investigated in children and adults of all ages from numerous perspectives throughout the literature. Two areas of child development that influence lying behavior are social and cognitive development. Previous studies have separately evaluated these influences. The goal of this study is to evaluate both social and cognitive development together. We will analyze socialization through parenting styles and social-cognitive development through the theory of mind in relation to children’s lying behavior. Using a parenting style questionnaire and a theory of mind task, we will compare these variables to the participant’s performance on a lying task. The practical importance of this investigation is to develop a greater understanding of the interactions between parenting style, theory of mind, and common lying behaviors in preschoolers.