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Chapter 2: Cognitive Development:

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1 Chapter 2: Cognitive Development:
Vygotsky’s Theories Week 4 Instructor: Xu Wei

2 Chapter 2 Objectives (continue)
Objective 2.3: Explain how the underlying principles and stages presented in Vygotsky’s theory of development influence current educational research and practice.

3 Lev Vygotsky Russian psychologist ( ), much of whose work was suppressed until the dissolution of the USSR Focused on sociocultural theory, the idea that all development takes place in social settings and is therefore influenced by social forces Developed theories as he worked to improve his own teaching and looked for ideas that might help explain and guide his experiences as an educator

4 Vygotsky’s View of Cognitive Development
How Development Occurs Learning Precedes Development Acquisition of Signs with Help of More Experienced Others Internalization of Signs Autonomous Problem Solving (Self-regulation) Copyright Allyn & Bacon 1999

5 Vygotsky’s View of Cognitive Development
Key Ideas Social Sources of Individual Thinking Role of Cultural Tools Zone of Proximal Development Copyright Allyn & Bacon 1999

6 Sociocultural Theory Information is passed in two phases: interpsychologically and then intrapsychologically Experiences are co-constructed; both the teacher and the learner participate in the process of knowledge acquisition or construction

7 Cultural Tools Material (e.g. calculators, blogs, wikis, PDAs, cell phones, etc.) & Psychological (signs and symbol systems, Braille and sign language, maps, works of art, codes, and language) Tools employed in the culture, in frequent social situations are critical to cognitive development People are best able to represent their thoughts when they are familiar with commonly accepted forms of communication

8 Vygotsky’s View of Cognitive Development
Private Speech Zone of Proximal Development Scaffolding Copyright Allyn & Bacon 1999

9 Zone of Proximal Development
The Zone of Proximal development is known as the ZPD or Zo-Ped (common in Europe)

10 Zone of Proximal Development
Zone of Proximal Development—Mentor scaffolds learning and the learner develops new knowledge using developmentally appropriate learning tasks. ZPD Student Knows Learning Goal Copyright Allyn & Bacon 1999

11 Scaffolding “Scaffolding” is the work required by the expert necessary to bring the learner from that which they are capable of doing alone to that which they are capable of doing with assistance. It is also used to describe the act of assistance itself.

12 Scaffolding 2. Time Passes = Gradual Release
New Task = Mentor + Learner 3. Learner Takes on the Responsibility for learning Scaffolding Copyright Allyn & Bacon 1999

13 Applications of Vygotsky’s Theory
Provide Cooperative Learning Activities Among Students with Different Ability Levels Copyright Allyn & Bacon 1999

14 Vygotsky’s Work: Instructional Strategies
Instructional Principles *Embed learning activities in a context that is culturally authentic. *Create learning activities that involve students in social interactions. *Encourage students to use language to describe their developing understandings. *Create learning activities that are in learners’ zones of proximal development. *Provide instructional assistance to promote learning and development.

15 Language Language is central to sociocultural theory because it is the primary means of information transmission between expert and learner Private Speech vs. Egocentric Speech: Piaget viewed egocentric speech as evidence of children’s social immaturity Vygotsky viewed private speech as a tool for simplifying complex tasks

16 Language Have you ever found yourself talking out loud while trying to solve a difficult problem?

17 Comparing Piaget and Vygotsky’s Theories
Vygotsky's ideas: Continuous development (no stages) Zone of proximal development Socially transmitted knowledge (cooperative learning and Scaffolding) Private speech helps internalize knowledge Piagetian Ideas: Four discrete stages Cognitive development is limited by stages Young children are schematic Motivation to maintain cognitive equilibrium Development occurs when assimilation is not possible (adaptation) Both were constructivists Both believed that social forces set the limits of development Copyright Allyn & Bacon 1999

18 Role of Social Interaction
Piaget: Disequilibrium is the key to learning. Vygotsky: Encounters with more experienced people (experts) is key to learning. Piaget: Peer-to-peer interaction is the best source of motivation to learn. Vygotsky: Adult or older person-to-child interactions as ideal sources of learning.

19 Review Piaget and Vygotsky suggest a paradigm of cognitive development through physical and social stimulation. Cognitive development requires sensory stimulation; high variability in sensory experiences leads to high levels of cognitive development.

20 Review Children should have opportunities to play.
Students should not be assisted with that which they are able to do by themselves; they should be assisted to achieve slightly more than they might on their own.

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