We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Piaget’s Theory of Cognitive Development

The whole doc is available only for registered users
  • Pages: 2
  • Word count: 467
  • Category: Cognitive

A limited time offer! Get a custom sample essay written according to your requirements urgent 3h delivery guaranteed

Order Now

• Swiss psychologist who studied cognitive development
• Felt that younger children think differently than older children and adults
• Developed the most influential theory of intellectual development

How do children learn?
• According to Piaget, children actively construct knowledge as they manipulate and explore their world
– Use and form SCHEMAS through a process of Adaptation and Organization
– SCHEMA: an organized way of making sense of experience/ categories or ways of thinking

• Building schemas through direct interaction with environment
• Assimilation: use current schemas to interpret external world
• Accommodation: create new schemas or adjust old ones First try to assimilate, then accommodate

• Internal way of rearranging schemas and linking them with other schemas

4 Stages of Cognitive Development
• Sensorimotor stage: birth-2yrs.
• Preoperational stage: 2-7 yrs.
• Concrete Operational stage: 7-11 yrs.
• Formal Operational stage: 12- adulthood

Sensorimotor Stage
• Children experience the world through senses and actions
• The child is working on 2 activities:
– Sensation
– Movement
– “Think” with eyes, ears, hands etc.

Infants are working on mastering their bodies and movements. Then they work on goal directed behavior.

Object Permanence

• Objects are not permanent to infants at this stage. Once something is out of vision, it no longer exists.

Stranger anxiety

• At the end of the stage, children begin to represent the world around them with language.
• They also have a sense of self recognition that allows them to begin to imitate and play.

Preoperational Stage
Children represent things with words and images, but lack logical reasoning. Make believe play is a way to practice/strengthen schemas.
Stage is dominated by egocentrism and centration

• World only exists in term of himself/herself.
• Children are unable to see things from someone else’s point of view.

• Children also display animistic thinking.

Children do not understand…
• Reversibility: that a relationship that goes in one direction can go in the other direction too.
• Conservation: you can change some of an object’s characteristics while keeping others the same.
• Due to CENTRATION: children focus only on 1 aspect of a situation
• Types: mass, area, length, number, gender, volume

Children do not understand…
• Hierarchical Classification: cannot organize objects into classes and subclasses on the basis of similarities and differences.

Concrete Operational Stage
• Ages 7-11 years
• Children are thinking logically about concrete events and can grasp concrete analogies and perform arithmetical operations.
– However, thinking is extremely concrete and “Black and White.”
– Children are “rule followers” at this stage

Concrete Operational Children are capable of:
• Seeing something from someone else’s point of view.
• Conservation
• Reversibility
• Classification
• Seriation

Formal Operational Stage
• Ages 12 through adulthood
• Children are capable of abstract reasoning and forming a hypothesis.
• Piaget argued that there are varying degrees of this.

Piaget’s Strengths
• Changed early education for children
• Convinced people that children are active learners capable of thought

Piaget’s Limitations
• Underestimated children’s abilities.
• Described children in terms of what they can’t do.
• Tests used items unfamiliar to the children
• Didn’t account for culture and social interactions enough

Related Topics

We can write a custom essay

According to Your Specific Requirements

Order an essay
Materials Daily
100,000+ Subjects
2000+ Topics
Free Plagiarism
All Materials
are Cataloged Well

Sorry, but copying text is forbidden on this website. If you need this or any other sample, we can send it to you via email.

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.
Sorry, but only registered users have full access

How about getting this access

Your Answer Is Very Helpful For Us
Thank You A Lot!


Emma Taylor


Hi there!
Would you like to get such a paper?
How about getting a customized one?

Can't find What you were Looking for?

Get access to our huge, continuously updated knowledge base

The next update will be in:
14 : 59 : 59