The exactness with which an agent reproduces the observed behavior of another individual or group. Copying (also called imitative) fidelity can be thought of as a spectrum from high to low and encompasses various social learning strategies.
Copying fidelity and imitation have been characterized in a variety of ways throughout the literature on social learning. Research on social learning has primarily come from comparative programs focusing on how children, and other species (primarily apes and monkeys) learn from others to acquire problem-solving, instrumental skills. Much of the previous literature has examined the physical-causal information required to allow children, and other animals, to accurately copy an instrumental action sequence. The focus on the role of physical-causal reasoning in social learning led to attempts to define social learning mechanisms based on what features of an action sequence children, and other animals, accurately replicate. Much of this...
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