Auditory Hallucinations in Normal Child Populations

David Pearson, Andrea Burrow, Christina FitzGerald, Kate Green, Gary Lee, and Nicola Wise, Personality & Individual Differences, August 2001, 31, 3, 401–407.

Abstract: It has been accepted for some time that normal adult populations can report hallucinatory experiences. Such experiences can be generated in the laboratory setting. The current study was based upon methodology used by Feelgood and Rantzen (S. R. Feelgood, & A. J. Rantzen, Auditory and visual hallucinations in university students, Personality and Individual Differences, 1994, 17, 2, 293-296), that exposed adult participants to ambiguous stimuli which in turn generated hallucinatory experiences. The current study used similar methodology, but applied to child participants, which yielded similar results. The results suggested a developmental continuum of hallucination experiences between children and adults. The implication of this is that children can experience hallucinations in a similar way to adults. Links between childhood imaginary companions and hallucinatory experiences were also suggested.