Flashcards in Piaget, Vygotsky, Baillargeon Deck (46):
What is cognitive development?
a general term to describe the development of all mental processes, in particular, thinking, reasoning and our understanding of the world - it continues throughout our lifespan, but psychologists have been particularly concerned with how thinking and development develops through childhood
What were Piaget's key assumptions?
- children think differently to adults
- maturation is the key to how children's thinking changes
- the role of motivation - disequilibrium, equilibration
- how knowledge develops - schema: adaptation, assimilation & accommodation
What are schemas?
contain our understanding of an object, person, idea - become increasingly complex during development as we acquire more information about each object/idea - mental framework of beliefs/expectations, developed by experience
What is 'me-schema'?
new schema constructed in infancy (we are born with a few) e.g. name, age
What is disequilibrium?
the motivation to learn, an uncomfortable state that when we need to adapt to a new situation as schema are insufficient
What is equilibration?
when we have encountered new information and built it into our understanding of a topic due to assimilation or accommodation - everything is balanced and we have escaped disequilibrium
What is assimilation?
a form of learning that takes place when we acquire new information or more advanced understanding of an object, person or idea - if new info does not radically change our understanding, we can assimilate it into existing schema
What is accommodation?
a form of learning that takes place when we acquire new information that changes our understanding of a topic to the extent that we need to form one or more new schemas and/or radically change existing schemas in order to deal with the new understanding
AO3 Piaget's theory - learn though forming mental representations
Howe et al: 9-12 year olds in groups discuss how objects move down a hill - showed level of understanding increases after discussion but children did not reach same conclusions
AO3 Piaget's theory - application: activity-orientated classrooms
allow children to learn in a more natural way as they actively engage so can construct their own understanding of cirriculum - positive impact on education
AO3 Piaget's theory - limited explanation
doesn't refer to the role of others like Vygotsky, only recognised teachers as important in discovery situations
AO3 Piaget's theory - role of equilibrium overemphasised
not all children equally motivated to remove disequilibrium, Piaget used a biased sample of middle-class families children from his uni - this weakens the validity
AO3 Piaget's theory - underplay the role of language
just another cognitive ability that develops in line with other abilities - Vygotsky recognised its importance, if it is central and Piaget does not fully examine it, this means validity is limited
What is object permanence?
the ability to realise that an object still exists when it passes out of the visual field, Piaget believed that his ability appears around 8 months, prior to this, children lose interest in an object once they can't see it and and presumably are no longer aware of its existence
What is conservation?
the ability to realise that quantity remains the same even when the appearance of an object or a group of objects changes
What is egocentrism?
child's tendency to only see the world from the own POV - Inhelder & Piaget demonstrated this with Three Moutains Task
What is class inclusion?
an advanced classification skill in which we recognise that classes of objects have subsets and are themselves sets of larger classes
What were Piaget's stages of intellectual development?
Sensorimotor stage (0-2)
Pre-operational stage (2-7)
Stage of concrete operations (7-11)
Stage of formal operations (11+)
Outline the Sensorimotor stage
(0-2) baby's focus on physical sensations and basic coordination between what they see and body movement
understand people are separate objects and acquire some basic language
they develop object permanence at about 8 months
Outline the pre-operational stage
(2-7) egocentrism: tested by Inhelder & Piaget 3 mountains task, child matched to own POV, not a dolls
do not have the ability to conserve
early in the stage can classification but when showed 7-8 year olds 5 dogs, 2 cats, and asked if there were more dogs or animals, they said dogs - do not yet have this ability
Outline the concrete operations stage
(7-11) children mastered conservation and are improving on egocentrism and class inclusion
still have some reasoning problems and are only able to reason / operate on physical objects in their presence
Outline the stage of formal operations
(11+) capable of formal reasoning and abstract reasoning develops, can focus on a line of argument and cannot be distracted by its content
AO3 Piaget's stages - underestimate children in pre-operations ability to conserve
McGarrigle&Donaldson: 'naughty teddy' accidentally move counters, 72% children under 7 correctly say same number as before
- suggests Piaget underestimated ability of 4-6 year olds
- methodology may have made them think something must have changed (otherwise, why would researcher ask?)
- question validity
AO3 Piaget's stages - underestimate ability of class inclusion
Siegler&Svetina: when 5 year pads received freedback on pointing out subsets they understood class inclusion - contradict Piaget's stages and doubt validity
AO3 Piaget's stages - underestimate ability to see from multiple POV
Hughes: even at 3.5, child could position a boy doll in model building with 2 intersecting walls where he couldn't be seen by policeman doll
- suggests children can decentre earlier
AO3 Piaget's stages - domain general - may not be valid
Studies show children with ASD suggest intellectual abilities may develop independently - these children are very egocentric but normal language - may not be valid to explain all examples of development
Outline Vygotsky's assumptions
- reasoning skills develop sequentially
- mainly dependent on social processes
- knowledge is intermental, then intramental
- cultural differences explained by differing experiences and cultural values/beliefs that surround us
What is the zone of proximal development?
the gap between a child's current level of development, defined by cognitive tasks that they can perform without help, and what they are capable of with the help of an expert
What did Vygotsky suggest the role of the teacher was?
to guide the child through their ZPD to reach a level of full understanding - not just acquiring facts but becoming more skilled at reasoning - only achieved with help of experts, not just though exploration
What is scaffolding?
the process of helping a learner cross their ZPD suggested by Wood et al
What are the features of scaffolding?
recruitment - engaging interest
reducing degrees of freedom - focusing learner, getting them started
direction maintenance - motivating them to preserver
What progressive strategies are used to scaffold learning?
preparation for child
indication of materials
specific verbal instruction
AO3 Vygotsky - evidence for ZPD
4/5 year olds perform better on 'how many sweets' when working with peers - demonstrate more advanced reasoning with more expert people - support validity ZPD
AO3 Vygotsky - evidence for scaffolding
Cornner&Cross: longitudinal study - 45 children between 16 & 54 months and observed changes over time, less intervention from mother as child got older - level of help declines over time, also useful to explain how children move through ZPD
AO3 Vygotsky - application
7 year olds tutored by 10 year olds, in addition to whole class teaching, progressed further in reading than control group - validity and usefulness
AO3 Vygotsky - what children learn from interactions is individual
Howe et al: 9-12 year olds who had group discussions about movement of objects down a slope showed better understanding after discussion but did not pick up the same facts
- criticised for not showing explaining the differing rates of cognitive development like Piaget does with maturation
AO3 Vygotsky - may not be applicable to all
not all children learn effectively in a social situation - personality of learner and style of processing need to be considered
Outline Baillargeon's assumptions about cognitive development
infants in sensorimotor stage have better understanding of the physical world than suggested by Piaget
born with an innate PRS and primitive awareness which is refined through experience
Why did Baillargeon argue that infants did not reach for hidden objects before 8 months?
did not have the right motor skills
Why did Baillargeon develop the violation of expectation technique
thought Piaget's methods underestimated children's abilities - VOE shows reactions to expected/unexpected event so could make inferences about infant's cognitive abilities
Outline Baillargeon and Graber's VOE research
24 5-6 month old infants shown tall or short rabbit passing behind a screen with a window
impossible = neither rabbit appear
possible = tall rabbit seen, short not
What did Baillargeon & Graber find?
stare at possible for 25.11 secs
impossible = 33.07 secs
- knew tall rabbit should appear
- surprised at impossible
- object permanence before 6 months
AO3 Baillargeon - better test for infant understanding than Piaget
eliminates Piaget's confounding variable that they stop looking simply because they loose interest - greater validity in methodology
AO3 Baillargeon - hard to judge what infant understands
VOE is just predicting how infant will behave if there is a VOE, might not actually stare at impossible for longer as they realise it is impossible, but because they just notice there is a difference - based on inference, lowers validity
AO3 Baillargeon - PRS explains why physical understanding is universal
Hespos & van Marle: basic physical properties understood by almost everyone - understanding drop keys fall to floor (universal) = innate and no cultural difference