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Jean Piaget's Theory of Development

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Jean Piaget’s theory is basically cognitive and developmental and most of his studies were based on his three children, he called this the clinical method. This method was used in interviews with patients by asking them questions and observing their behaviour. Whilst using this method he learnt that children under 7 years use different principles to base their judgments on compared to older children. Piaget would use the interview responses for following questions he could ask. The method at first did not receive much support because it was considered too subjective by other theorists. Today however, the theory is considered the most comprehensive on intelligential development. One of Piaget’s main concepts was the ‘Schema’. Piaget define the schema as the basic structure through which an individual knowledge in mentally represented. He suggested that as children develop socially, mentally and physically new schemas develop and the old ones would either integrate or modify to be cognitive structures. (Taylor,G, Mackenny,L 2008) Whilst studying children’s development, Piaget came to realise that children reason differently from adults when being interviewed, they has different philosophies about the nature of the world. A child is actively involved in his own development Piaget believed and the child once born is not a ‘blank slate’ as they are always learning ideas about the world such as space, quantity and number. Piaget’s theories concentrated on 4 factors of development; ‘Maturation’ which focuses on the maturation of a child after birth, ‘Experience’ this may be direct physical experience a child has or the reflection the child has on the structure of an experience, ‘Social Transmission’ which is the social interaction the ch... ... middle of paper ... ...c patterns of behaviour have a minor role in the development of any human intelligence. Piaget’s ideas opposed the traditional behaviourist theory; he believed that infants frequently and actively seek stimulation. Piaget’s theory is closely related to critical thinking skills, he suggested that the acquisition of a person’s knowledge is the result of interaction between the learner and the environment and so learning is facilitated by a child’s acquisition of new skills and experiences, allowing the child to progressively become more capable of critical thinking. Piaget’s theory has allowed researchers, teachers and psychologists to further understand the development in any child although it has been criticized there, Piaget’s theories on development has allowed for new experiments and testing on children’s behaviour as well as a scientific approach to how we learn.
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