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Presentation on theme: "CHAPTER 7 COGNITION."— Presentation transcript:


2 Learning Objectives How do organization, adaptation, and disequilibrium guide development?

3 Chapter 7: Cognition Cognition: The activity of knowing
Typical of humans throughout lifespan Changes across the lifespan Piaget and Vygotsky

4 Piaget Genetic Epistemology Clinical Method
How we come to know reality How do children come to know the world? Clinical Method Question and answer technique Used to discover how children reason Intelligence: How well we adapt Schemes/cognitive structures Active creators of our own intelligence epistemology = studies knowledge of reality Genetic = emergence or development Schemes are cognitive structures or-ganized patterns of action or thought that people construct to interpret their experiences

5 organization, children systematically combine existing schemes into new and more complex ones.
Adaptation is the process of adjusting to the demands of environment


7 Adaptation Assimilation Accommodation
Using existing schemes to interpret new experiences E.g., Birds are things that fly Accommodation Modifying schemes to fit new experience E.g., Butterflies are different than birds even though they both fly





12 equilibriation

13 Piaget Adaptation Intelligence = Adaptation Constructivism
Adjusting to the environment Using assimilation and accommodation Intelligence = Adaptation Constructivism Children construct own reality Use their experiences (schemes)

14 Piaget Four stages/changes in ability to reason Invariant sequence
Sensorimotor: birth to 2 years Preoperational: 2 to 7 years Concrete operations: 7 to 11 years Formal operations: 12+ years Invariant sequence Rates may vary Requires maturation and experience

15 Learning Objectives What are the major achievements of the sensorimotor stage ? How do infants progress toward these achievements?

16 Piaget Sensorimotor Stage Outcome of Stage
Newborn uses reflexes to understand world (sensory & motoric intelligence) Outcome of Stage Mental representation Evidence: Object Permanence Symbolic Capacity Evidence: Language infants solve problems through their actions rather than with their minds

17 During the fi rst month, young infants react refl exively to internal and external stimulation.

18 In the primary circular reactions substage ( 1 4 months), they are more interested in their own bodies than in manipulating toys. Moving their tongues or fi ngers around is entertainment enough at this age. Piaget named this substage primary circular reactions because he observed infants repeating ( hence, the term circular) actions relating to their own bodies ( i. e., primary to themselves) that had initially happened by chance.

19 infants derive pleasure from repeatedly performing an action, such as sucking or banging a toy. Now the repetitive actions are called secondary circular reactions because they involve something in the infants external environment (

20 coordination of secondary schemes, infants combine ( i. e
coordination of secondary schemes, infants combine ( i. e., coordinate) secondary actions to achieve simple goals such as pushing an obstacle out of the way of reaching a de-sired object.

21 tertiary circular re-actions ( months), infants experiment in varied ways with toys, exploring them thoroughly and learning all about their properties. Interest in novelty for its own sake

22 The beginning of thought


24 Object Permanence A not B error 4-8 mos-out of sight out of mind
Mastered 18 mos

25 Learning Objectives What are the characteristics and limitations of preoperational thought?

26 Preoperational Stage Egocentric Thinkers Problem Solving Limited
Classification and seriation problems Ages 2–7: Preschool May have imaginary companions Lack Conservation Perceptual Salience Pretend/fantasy play, can use words to refer to things that aren’t present perceptual salience, or the most obvious features of an object or situation,

27 Irreversible thinking
Static thought Irreversible thinking static thought, or thought that is fi xed on end states rather than the changes that transform one state into another, as when the water is sitting in the two glasses not being poured or manipulated. Decentration the ability to focus on two or more dimensions of a problem at once.

28 Some common tests of the child’s ability to conserve.


30 Learning Objectives What are the major characteristics and limitations of concrete operational thought? What are the main features of concrete operational thought?

31 Concrete Operations Age 7-11 Can Conserve Seriation and classification
Decentration Reversible thinking Logical thinking (limited to reality) Seriation and classification Transitive thinking: “ If J is taller than M, and M is taller than S, who is taller – J or S?”

32 Learning Objectives What are the main features of formal operational thought? In what ways might adult thought be more advanced than adolescent thought?

33 Formal Operations Adolescence/Puberty Logical Thinking About Ideas
Hypothetical and abstract thinking Hypothetical-deductive reasoning Decontextual Thinking Ability to separate prior knowledge/beliefs from new evidence to the contrary If concrete operations are mental actions on objects ( tangible things and events), formal operations are mental actions on ideas. concrete operators deal with realities, whereas formal operators can deal with possibili-ties, including those that contradict known reality.

34 Formal Operations 2 Adolescent Egocentrism
Differentiating own thoughts from others’ Imaginary audience Also, learning to present themselves to a real audience Personal fable “No one has ever felt like this before!” “I drive better when I’m drunk!”

35 Cognition in Adulthood
Formal Operations Require Normal intelligence Higher education (scientific thinking) Lower Performance on Formal Operations Why? Field of expertise


37 Postformal Thought “A” grows 1 cm per month, “B” grows 2 cm per month
Who is taller?

38 John is known to be a heavy drinker, especially when he goes to parties. Mary, John’s wife, warns him that if he gets drunk one more time she will leave him and take the children. Tonight John is out late at an office party. John comes home drunk. Does Mary leave John?

39 Postformal Thought (Highest Level)
Relativistic thinking Relativist Absolutist No absolute answer in many situations

40 Progression to postformal thought
Adolescence to adulthood: Absolutist Relativist Commitment to position Advanced thinkers: Thrive on paradoxes and challenges Concrete Operations: objects Formal Operations: ideas Postformal: systems of ideas

41 Postformal occurs… In a minority of adults
Mostly in those with advanced education In those who are open to rethinking issues In a culture that nourishes new ideas

42 Life circumstances and environmental demands tell us more about cognitive abilities than age.

43 The Demographics of Aging Population Trends in the United States
Figure 1.1 Population demographics for 2000 43

44 The Demographics of Aging Population Trends in the United States
Figure 1.2 Population demographics for 2025 44

45 The Demographics of Aging Population Trends in the United States
Figure 1.3 Population demographics for 2050 45

46 The Demographics of Aging Population Trends in the United States
Figure 1.4 Population demographics for 2100 46

47 Diversity of Older Adults in the U.S.
Figure 1.5 Population trends for minorities 47

48 Population Trends Around the World
Figure 1.6 Global Population trends 48

49 Population Trends Around the World
Figure 1.7 Global Population trends 49

50 Aging Some skills decline as we age


52 Age-Related Changes in Primary Abilities
Data from Seattle Longitudinal Study of more than 5,000 individuals from 1956 to 1998 in six testing cycles: People tend to improve on primary abilities until late 30s or early 40s. Scores stabilize until mid-50s and early 60s. By late 60s consistent declines are seen. Nearly everyone shows a decline in one ability, but few show decline on four or five abilities.



55 Poor performace of older groups does not necessarily mean that cognitive abilities are lost as one ages Cohort effect

56 Piagetian tasks are more like school exercises than real life challenges

57 Matches Which one is more similar? Pipe Cigar



60 Kpelle



63 Expertise Older adults compensate for poorer performance through their expertise. Expertise helps the aging adult compensate for losses in other skills.

64 Learning Objectives What are the limitations and challenges to Piaget’s theory of cognitive development?

65 “Assessing the impact of Piaget on developmental psychology is like assessing the impact of Shakespeare on English literature or Aristotle on philosophy--impossible.

66 Piaget Contributions Stimulated much research
Correct about cognitive development

67 Some things we learned from Piaget
Infant are active in their own development

68 Young humans think different than older humans

69 The sequence of development seems to be correct

70 Challenges Underestimated competencies
Focused on performance not competence Domain growth rather than stages Social influences left out

71 Learning Objectives What is the main theme of Vygotsky’s theory of cognitive development? How does social interaction contribute to cognitive development according to Vygotsky’s theory? In what ways are Vygotsky and Piaget similar and different in their ideas about cognition?

72 Vygotsky Emphasized the Sociocultural Context
Culture effects how and what we think Society precedes the individual and provides the conditions that allow individual thinking to emerge

73 Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD)
Gap. Accomplishment with guidance Where lessons should be aimed

74 Knowledge is not fixed No single test can reflect a person’s range of knowledge Performance on assisted learning tasks predict future achievement

75 Guided Participation Learning
Private Speech Guides Behavior (3&4 yr olds)


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