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1e-mail -- firstname.lastname@example.org HUMAN DEVELOPMENT 1 PSYCHOLOGY 3050: Thinking in Symbols: The Development of Representation (Ch 5)Dr. Jamie DroverSN-3094,--Winter Semester, 2013
2Learning to Use Symbols Symbols: external referents for objects and events.Representational Insight: Knowledge that an entity can stand for something other than itself.
3Young Children’s Interpretation of Pictures and Models DeLoache (1987) had 2- and 3-year-old children search for a toy hidden in a room.Earlier, they are shown a model room that illustrates where the toy is.They then have to find the toy in the room.Then have to find the model toy in the model room.
4Young Children’s Interpretation of Pictures and Models 3-year-olds possessrepresentational insight.2.5-year-olds do not
5Young Children’s Interpretation of Pictures and Models If a picture is used instead of a scale model, 2.5-year-olds show representational insight, whereas 2-year-olds do not (DeLoache 1987).These findings may reflect difficulty with dual-representation.A model is its own item, worthy of its own attention.When models are made less interesting, performance changes.
6Young Children’s Interpretation of Pictures and Models When models were viewed through a window, 2.5 year-olds’ performance was better than on the model task.When 3-year-olds were allowed to play with the model beforehand, performance decreased.DeLoache et al. (1997) designed a task that did not require dual representation.
7Young Children’s Interpretation of Pictures and Models “credible shrinking room studies” yr olds can succeed“shrinking machine” can shrink roomshown “Terry the Troll”machine “shrinks” (then enlarges) Terry
8Young Children’s Interpretation of Pictures and Models
9Young Children’s Interpretation of Pictures and Models Standard model task – hide Terry in large roomRoom was “shrunk”2.5 yr can find Terry in small roomNo need for representational link between model and the room, instead -- large and small room believed to be the same thingno dual representation needed
10Young Children’s Interpretation of Pictures and Models Even an 18 month-old will show basic symbolic play.But this is not necessarily dual representation.DeLoache et al. (1998) presented pictures to 9 to 19 month-old children from the US and the Ivory Coast.The youngest children treated them as objects.
11Young Children’s Interpretation of Pictures and Models By 19 months of age, they realized the picture represented something else.
12The Appearance/Reality Distinction The knowledge that the appearance of an object does not necessarily correspond to its reality.
13The Appearance/Reality Distinction De Vries (1969) studied qualitative identityChildren were familiarized with a trained cat.The cat was then fitted with a dog mask.3-year-olds believed the mask changed the identity of the cat.Flavell (1986) poured white milk into a red glass while young children were watching.Showed children a sponge that looked like a rock.
14The Appearance/Reality Distinction They were asked what does it look like to your eyes right now?Asked, what is it, really and truly?Made two kinds of errors.Phenomenism errors: said milk was really and truly red.Intellectual realism: Said the fake rock looked like a sponge.
15The Appearance/Reality Distinction Young children’s poor performance on appearance/reality distinction tasks is surprisingly pervasive.Might stem from problems with dual encoding.They have trouble representing an object in more than one form at a time.15
16Jean PiagetA Swiss philosopher/psychologist first trained as a biologist.Has had the greatest impact on developmental psychology.Emphasized the role of children in development.Children are not incomplete adults.Think differently, qualitative differences.
17Assumptions of Piaget’s Theory We develop in discrete stages.Cognitive development is through a series of transformations.But underlying functions are continuous.Mechanisms of cognitive development are domain-general (homogeneity of function).
18Assumptions of Piaget’s Theory Children are not passive creatures, they are intrinsically active and possess an innate curiosity and seek stimulation.The motivation for development is within the child.They are primarily responsible for their own development.
19Assumptions of Piaget’s Theory Cognition is a constructive process.We interpret the world through our own personal perspective, ie, through what we already know.ConstructivismChildren at different levels construct different realities.
20The Constructive Nature of Cognition They come to know objects by acting on them – action schemes.Scheme: the basic unit of knowledge.These action schemes become internalized – operations or operational schemes.
21Functional Invariants Processes that characterize all biological systems (including intelligence) and operate throughout the lifespan.Organization: Through organization, every intellectual operation is related to all other acts of intelligence.Structures/schemes are not independent, but are coordinated.Domain general
22Functional Invariants Adaptation: the organism’s ability to adjust its structures to environmental demands.Assimilation: the incorporation of new information in already existing schemes.Accommodation: a current scheme is changed to incorporate new information.
23Assimilation and Accommodation Knowledge is constructed by these processes.Every act of intelligence involves both.One may predominate over the other.Play, imitation
24EquilibrationThe organism’s attempt to keep its cognitive structures in balance.When information does not match current schemes, disequilibrium results.Achieved through alteration of cognitive structures (e.g., accommodation).The child may also assimilate.
25Stages of DevelopmentThe order of the stages are invariant and culturally universal.Development is epigeneticBased on bidirectional interactions between structure and function.Later development is based on earlier development.New structure is a transformation of an earlier one.
26The Sensorimotor Stage Birth to 2 years.Intelligence is limited to one’s own actions on the environment.Do not form mental representations.Understand only what is physically present.Knowledge progresses from sensorimotor to representational thinking.
27The Sensorimotor Stage There is a change in personal perspective.Learn to differentiate themselves from the external world.There are six substages1) the use of reflexes: Birth to 1 monthUse reflexes to interpret the worldThey apply reflexes to objects and assimilate them to their schemes.
28The Sensorimotor Stage Highly restricted in what they can know.They do not behave intentionally, but can adapt.2) Primary circular reactions: 1 to 4 monthsReflexes are extended, new patterns of behavior are acquired.Can modify reflex schemes.
29The Sensorimotor Stage Primary Circular Reactions: the first class of acquired repetitive behaviors.Based on hereditary reflexesShow primitive signs of intentionality.
30The Sensorimotor Stage 3) Secondary Circular Reactions: 4 to 8 months.Not based on reflexes, but represent the first acquired new behaviors.These behaviors first appear by chance.4) Coordination of secondary circular reactions: 8 to 12 months.Show goal-directed behavior and cause and effect.
31The Sensorimotor Stage Coordinates secondary circular reactions.5) Tertiary Circular Reactions: 12 to 18 months.Characterized by clear means/end differentiation.Can alter existing schemes directly related to obtaining a solution.Show increasing locomotive abilities.Show a peak in curiosity.
32The Sensorimotor Stage Still cannot form mental representations.Solve problems through trial and error.6) Invention of new means through mental combinations.Symbolic functioning is first seen.New means are invented through mental combinations.
33The Sensorimotor Stage Show symbolic function through language, deferred imitation, gestures, and mental imagery.
34The Development of Operations In the three stages following the sensorimotor stage, children can form mental representations.Preoperations: 2-7Concrete Operations: 7-11Formal Operations: Begins at 11
35The Development of Operations Operations: Cognitive schemes that describe ways in which children act on their world.Mental; require the use of symbolsDerive from action. They are internalized actions.Exist within an organized system.All cognitive operations are integrated.
36The Development of Operations Operations are logical and follow rules.Reversibility – knowledge that an operation can be reversed. Two types:negation – an operation can be negated, or inverted(5+2 = 7; 7-2 = 5)compensation -- change in one dimension offset by changes in another -- a tall thin man and a short fat man can weigh the same
37The Transition from Preoperational to Concrete Operational Thought Thinking in the preoperations stage is intuitive, lacking logic.More concerned with appearance than logicConservationThe realization that an entity stays the same despite changes in its form.This is the sign that one has achieved concrete operations.
38The Transition from Preoperational to Concrete Operational Thought E.g. conservation of liquid (volume).5-year-olds cannot solve this problem. 8-year-olds can solve the problem and explain why.
39The Transition from Preoperational to Concrete Operational Thought The pre-operational child thinks intuitively.If the liquid is poured back into the original container, preoperational children claim the amounts are equal.This does not produce contradiction (disequilibrium) in the preoperational child.But it does in older children. They will soon accommodate.
40The Transition from Preoperational to Concrete Operational Thought Conservation does not develop simultaneously for all properties of materials.Number before mass before weight before volumeNote that there is heterogeneity here.Conservation of Number
41The Transition from Preoperational to Concrete Operational Thought ReversibilityPreoperational children can not apply negation or compensation to conservation problems.Centration v. DecentrationPreoperational children’s perception is centered.They make judgments based on the most salient aspect
42The Transition from Preoperational to Concrete Operational Thought Concrete operational children are decentered.Can remove their attention from specific aspects of the conservation problem and make decision based on all dimensions.Centration is not limited to conservation tasks but is found in everyday lifeUse height to estimate age
43The Transition from Preoperational to Concrete Operational Thought EgocentricityPreoperational children assume that others see the world as they do.This permeates their complete cognitive world.Perhaps this egocentricity is adaptive.
44Transition from Concrete to Formal Operational Thought In early adolescence, children’s thoughts are no longer applied to the concrete.Not limited to tangible facts or objectHypothetico-Deductive ReasoningThe benchmark of formal operations.They can generate hypotheses.Can think solely on the basis of symbols.
45Transition from Concrete to Formal Operational Thought Can generate ideas not yet experienced.Thinking like a scientistCan think inductively.Go from specific observations to broad generalizations.Hypotheses are generated then systematically tested.
46Transition from Concrete to Formal Operational Thought Pendulum problemGiven four factors that can affect pendulum speedString length, weight of object, height of release, force of push.Must formulate a hypothesisVary a single factor while holding the others constant.
47Transition from Concrete to Formal Operational Thought Preoperational children can carry out the first step.Concrete operational children can’t get the right answer.Can’t isolate a variable.Thinking About ThinkingCan examine the content of their own thought.
48Transition from Concrete to Formal Operational Thought Can acquire new information from internal reflection.Reflective abstraction: a rearrangement, by means of thought, of some matter previously presented to the subject in a rough or immediate form.EgocentricityAdolescents demonstrate centration.
49Transition from Concrete to Formal Operational Thought Believe that their abstract ideas are unique to them.Adolescents are extremely self-conscious.Playing to an imaginary audience.Leads to the personal fableBelief in uniqueness and invulnerability.May explain reckless behaviorMay be adaptive by ensuring experimentation and independence.
50Transition from Concrete to Formal Operational Thought It’s debatable whether adolescents or even adults are the logical thinkers Piaget thought they were.Formal operational thought is used by adults in some contexts, but not in other.
51The State of Piaget’s Theory Today Piaget’s theory continues to influence us today.But is it accurate?ContributionsFounded cognitive development as we know it.Became task focusedEmphasized the active role of the child.Constructivism
52The State of Piaget’s Theory Today Equilibration as an explanation.Introduced critical concepts.Scheme, object permanence, egocentrismProvided an accurate description of development.Influence went beyond cognitive development.
53The State of Piaget’s Theory Today Piaget’s intent was to measure competence.May have underestimated the competence of children.Object permanence, mental representation, egocentricityChildren can be trained to think at a higher level.ConservationMay be context specific
54The State of Piaget’s Theory Today In some cases, Piaget may have overestimated how adults think.See garlic powder example (p 182; Capon & Kuhn, 1977).
55Fuzzy Trace Theory Piaget’s theory is not perfect. New forms of thinking don’t necessarily replace older ones.Older children and adults can solve problems illogically.Dual-Processing: There are multiple ways of knowing, or of solving problems.
56Fuzzy Trace TheoryBased on intuitionism: People think, reason, and remember by processing inexact “fuzzy” memory representations.Cognition is intuitive.Memory traces exist on a literal/verbatim – fuzzy/gistlike continuum.People of all ages prefer to use fuzzy traces when solving problems.The extent of this preference changes with age.Reduction to essence rule
57Fuzzy Trace TheoryFuzzy traces are more easily accessed than verbatim traces.Verbatim traces are more susceptible to interference.Making responses produces output interference that hinders performance.Scheduling effects: caused by serial natureFeedback effects
58Developmental Differences There are changes in gist extraction.Young children are biased toward storing and retrieving verbatim traces.A verbatim to gist shift occurs during the elementary school years.Brainerd and Gordon (1994) have provided evidence for this (p. 191).Preschool children showed better memories for verbatim questions than for other questions.
59Developmental Differences Age differences have been found in sensitivity to output interference.Verbatim memory traces are more sensitive to interference than fuzzy traces.