Program Head, Psychological Sciences MS
PhD, Yale University
Development of Social Cognition and Critical Thinking
Candice Mills is an associate professor in Psychological Sciences at the University of Texas at Dallas. Dr. Mills earned her bachelor’s degree, summa cum laude, in cognitive neuroscience from the University of Florida, and a PhD in developmental psychology from Yale University.
My research, supported by grants from the National Institute of Child and Human Development and the Timberlawn Psychiatric Research Foundation, focuses on understanding how children learn from others. Because children are flooded with information from many sources, it is important for them to evaluate the quality of these sources, determine how much to believe the information they hear, and decide which information they should discard due to inaccuracy or bias. In one line of research, I examine how children evaluate the testimony of others by examining the factors that children use to decide whether or not to trust a piece of information. Much of this research examines developmental changes in what children understand about bias (e.g., Mills & Grant, in press; Mills & Keil, 2008). In another line of research, I examine how preschool and elementary school children ask questions of others to obtain information. Other research in our lab has examined a wide array of other issues related to social cognition and critical thinking, such as how children learn from listening, how stigmatized children think about stereotypes, when children are able to detect that they are being deceived, and how children evaluate what they know and don't know. Together, this research reveals important developments in how children think about and learn from the world around them. For more information, please view our lab website.
Mills, C. M., & Elashi, F. B. (in press). Children's skepticism: Developmental and individual differences in children's ability to detect and explain distorted claims. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology.
Landrum, A. R., Mills, C. M., & Johnston, A. M.*(2013). When do children trust the expert? Benevolence information influences children's trust more than expertise. Developmental Science, 16, 622-638.
Mills, C. M. (2013). Knowing when to doubt: Developing a critical stance when learning from others. Developmental Psychology, 49, 404-418.