• Document: Jean Piaget s Theory of Cognitive Development
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Jean Piaget’s Theory of Cognitive Development Jean Piaget 1896-1980 Sensorimotor Stage 0-24 months Preoperational Stage 2-7 years Subjective Æ Objective Concrete Operations 7-11 years Concrete Æ Abstract Uncoordinated Æ Coordinated The Sensorimotor Stage • Basic reflexes or schemes • Primary & secondary circular reactions • Objects as sensory pictures • Objects and schemas indistinguishable – A not B error • 24 months: Object permanence – Objectivity and subjectivity distinguished The Sensorimotor Stage • Object permanence Æ symbolic function Pre-operational Stage • Symbolic thought without operations – Operations: Logical principles • Conservation tasks – Perceptual reasoning vs logical consistency Pre-operational Stage • What logical principles are mastered in the Pre-operation stage? Pre-operational Stage • What logical principles are mastered in the Pre-operation stage? (1) Reversibility: Pouring water into the tall container can be reversed. Pre-operational Stage • What logical principles are mastered in the Pre-operation stage? (2) Compensation: Change in height compensated by change in width. Pre-operational Stage • What logical principles are mastered in the Pre-operation stage? (3) Identity: No amount of liquid has been added or taken away. Pre-operational Stage • Without operations, children’s thinking is: 1. Intuitive, perceptually-driven 2. Uncoordinated 3. Egocentric Pre-operational Stage • Without operations, children’s thinking is: 1. Intuitive, perceptually-driven 2. Uncoordinated 3. Egocentric • Observed across tasks and domains – Thus considered a “stage” of development Concrete Operations • Actions internalized & mentally simulated • Forms the basis of logical operations Evaluating Piaget • Highly original thinker – Neither an empiricist nor a nativist • Enormous scientific contributions – Errors and methods; developmental invariants • Challenging – Dense writing style & broad theoretical scope • Controversial – Competence-Performance distinction Does performance under-estimate competence? • Piaget’s tasks challenging • Distractions, reaching, etc. Habituation procedure Looking time Habituation procedure Looking time Habituation procedure Looking time Habituation procedure Looking time Habituation procedure Looking time Habituation procedure Looking time Habituation procedure Looking time Habituation procedure Looking time Habituation procedure Looking time Habituation procedure Looking time Object Permanence • Baillergeon, 1986 • Used habituation procedure to assess object permanence in 6-month-old infants. Habituation Display Test 1: Possible Event Test 2: Impossible Event Results and conclusions • 6- month-olds looked longer to impossible than possible test events. • Young infants understand that objects continue to exist after being hidden behind a screen. Conservation Tasks Jerome Bruner Conservation Tasks Jerome Bruner Challenges for Piaget • If object permanence achieved at 6-months, why do 12 month-olds commit the A not B error? • If children understand the concept of conservation, why do they fail the tasks? • What is developing? Information Processing Perspective • American tradition of experimental psychology • Thinking is information processing • Computer as a metaphor • Example: Atkinson & Shiffrin’s store model Atkinson & Shiffrin’s store model Short-term Long-term Stimulus Sensory register memory memory Executive functions Response Atkinson & Shiffrin’s store model Short-term Long-term Stimulus Sensory register memory memory Executive functions • Temporary cache • Response Infinite capacity • Brief duration Atkinson & Shiffrin’s store model Short-term Long-term Stimulus Sensory register memory memory Executive functions

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