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  • 1 Please ask the editor of the journal.
  • | 2 Evolution and Behaviour Research Group, Newcastle University Henry Wellcome Building, Framlington Place, Newcastle NE2 4HH, UK.
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Theory of mind, or the ability to make inferences about the mental states of other people, is thought to be the proximate mechanism underlying humans' ability to function in complex, collaborative social networks. Here we present a set of stories and questions for investigating higher-order theory of mind functioning in school-age children and also a scale for obtaining ratings of children's social competence. Ten and eleven year old children master first and second level theory of mind problems, are slightly above chance on third level problems and perform at chance on fourth level. Theory of mind performance is positively correlated with teacher ratings of the child's social competence. We also find poorer performance in a relatively deprived school than a relatively affluent one.