Encyclopedia of Public Health

2008 Edition
| Editors: Wilhelm Kirch

Role Taking

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-5614-7_3057


Perspective taking


A mental process that enables an individual to understand the point of view of another person or group of people. Specifically, role taking allows the individual to understand why others have certain attitudes and beliefs, and why others behave as they do. To accomplish role taking, the individual imagines himself or herself as that person (or group of people). A key period for the development of role taking abilities is between the ages of 4 to 12 years, and role taking is vital to the development of social skills.

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© Springer-Verlag 2008