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Cognitive Development Notes

5 Pages

Course Code
PSY 0310

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4/8 Cognitive Development Piaget (1896­1980) • Theories are widely discussed in the fields of philosophy, education, and mathematics • Wrote 43 books up until the day before he died • Theory o First cognitive theory (around 1920) o Described changes in children’s thinking over time o Regarded as the best theory that gives a broad understanding of children  Addresses language, scientific thinking, morals, and perception, and talks about children from birth to adolescence • Assumptions o Children construct knowledge based on their experiences o Able to learn on their own without the intervention of older children or adults o Don’t need any motivation because they are already intrinsically motivated and they love to learn  Directly opposed Freud, who claimed that children were motivated by drives  Piaget was more in line with Rousseau and Spock  Emphasized curiosity and discovery as human traits that are just as important as anything else o Had a negative view of American school • Overview of Theory o Intelligence is a form of biological adaptation  Did not view intelligence in the same way as other theorists (IQ and individual differences)  Was mainly interested in how kids generally become smarter with age 4/8  Adults have knowledge as an adaptation because it helps them survive in their environment o Learning is a process of adaptation  Kids get smarter to adapt to the environment that they live in  Schemes: a child’s current knowledge base  Assimilation: translating information into a form that they can use with the knowledge that they already have (fitting information into the scheme)  Accommodation: changing current knowledge structures in response to new experiences (reorganizing thoughts and rethinking in order to move up to a higher level of thinking) • E.g. Baby grasping a ball o Scheme: one-handed grasping o Assimilation: grasping a new item with one hand in a similar but different way o Accommodation: using trial and error to learn to pick up a larger ball with two hands • E.g. Child learning subtraction (**purpose of homework) o Scheme: 19-7=12 o Assimilation: 14-2=12 (similar problem on HW) o Accommodation: 14-9=5 (learns that you don’t always carry the 1 down) • Stages of Theory (gradually happen, dates are not set in stone) o Sensorimotor (birth-2 yrs.)  Understands the world through sense and actions  No coherent thoughts and ideas  Don’t have intelligence (symbolic thinking)  Children don’t show internal tho
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