Jean Piaget: formal Operational phase of Cognitive Development

Cognition refers to thinking and memory processes, and cognitive development refers to long-term transforms in these processes. Among the most widely well-known perspectives about cognitive development is the cognitive stage theory that a Swiss psychologist called Jean Piaget. Piaget created and also studied an account of exactly how children and youth gradually end up being able come think logically and scientifically. Since his theory is particularly popular among educators, we emphasis on it in this chapter.

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Piaget was a psychological constructivist: in his view, learning was behavior by the interplay of adaptation (adjusting brand-new experiences come fit former concepts) and also accommodation (adjusting ideas to fit new experiences). The to-and-fro of this two processes leads not only to short-lived learning, but additionally to long-term developmental change. The long-term breakthroughs are yes, really the main emphasis of Piaget’s cognitive theory.

As you might remember, Piaget proposed the cognition emerged through distinct stages native birth with the end of adolescence. By stages he intended a sequence of thinking patterns through four key features:

They constantly happen in the very same order. No phase is ever skipped. Each stage is a significant transformation that the stage before it. Each later on stage integrated the previously stages into itself.

Basically this is the “staircase” model of development. Piaget suggest four significant stages of cognitive development, and called castle (1) sensorimotor intelligence, (2) preoperational thinking, (3) concrete to work thinking, and (4) official operational thinking. Each stage is associated with an age period of childhood, however only approximately. Officially operational thinking shows up in adolescence. 4

During the officially operational stage, teens are maybe to know abstract principles. They room no longer restricted by what can be directly seen or heard, and are able come contemplate such constructs together beauty, love, freedom, and also morality. Additionally, while younger kids solve difficulties through trial and also error, teenagers demonstrate hypothetical-deductive reasoning, i m sorry is arising hypotheses based on what might logically occur. They room able to think around all the possibilities in a instance beforehand, and also then test them systematically, (Crain, 2005) since they space able to interact in true scientific thinking.

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Figure (PageIndex1): Teenage thinking is defined by the capability to reason logically and solve hypothetical problems such as just how to design, plan, and also build a structure. (Image by the U.S. Army CCDC is license is granted under CC by 2.0)
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api/deki/files/26154/clipboard_e36be5a69f0f0ce63a03987fae86bf366.png?revision=1" />Figur (PageIndex3): This teenager is likely thinking, “they need to be whispering around me.” (Image by Twentyfour student is license is granted under CC BY-SA 2.0)

Another important an effect of adolescent egocentrism is the personal fable or id that one is unique, special, and also invulnerable come harm. Elkind (1967) defines that because teenagers feel so vital to rather (imaginary audience) castle regard themselves and their feelings together being special and unique. Teens believe that just they have experienced solid and varied emotions, and therefore others can never understand just how they feel. This uniqueness in one’s emotionally experiences reinforces the adolescent’s belief of invulnerability, specifically to death. Teenagers will communicate in risky behaviors, such together drinking and driving or unprotected sex, and feel they will not suffer any an unfavorable consequences. Elkind believed that adolescent egocentricity arised in early adolescence and declined in middle adolescence, however, current research has likewise identified egocentricity in so late adolescence (Schwartz, et al., 2008).


Consequences of official Operational Thought

As teenagers are currently able come think abstractly and hypothetically, they exhibit many brand-new ways of showing on information (Dolgin, 2011). Because that example, they demonstrate greater introspection or thinking around one’s thoughts and also feelings. They begin to imagine exactly how the civilization could be, which leader them come become idealistic or insisting ~ above high criter of behavior. Since of your idealism, they might become vital of others, especially adults in their life. Additionally, teens can demonstrate hypocrisy, or ~ pretend to be what they room not. Since they space able to recognize what others intend of them, they will conform come those expectation for their emotions and also behavior watch hypocritical come themselves. Lastly, teens can exhibit pseudostupidity, i beg your pardon is when they approach problems in ~ a level the is too complicated and lock fail due to the fact that the jobs are too simple. Their new ability to consider options is not completely under control and also they appear “stupid” once they room in truth bright, simply inexperienced. 8


Lawrence Kohlberg: moral Development

Kohlberg (1963) built on the work-related of Piaget and also was interested in finding out just how our ethical reasoning transforms as we get older. He want to find out how civilization decide what is right and what is wrong (moral justice). Just as Piaget thought that children’s cognitive breakthrough follows certain patterns, Kohlberg argued that we find out our ethical values through active thinking and reasoning, and also that moral breakthrough follows a collection of stages. Kohlberg"s six stages are normally organized into three level of ethical reasons. Come study moral development, Kohlberg posed moral dilemmas to children, teenagers, and also adults. You might remember one together dilemma, the Heinz dilemma, the was introduced in thing 12: 9

A mrs was on her deathbed. There was one drug that the medical professionals thought can save her. It was a form of radium the a druggist in the exact same town had actually recently discovered. The drug was expensive come make, but the druggist was charging ten time what the drug expense him come produce. He payment $200 for the radium and charged $2,000 for a small dose that the drug. The noble woman"s husband, Heinz, saw everyone he knew to borrow the money, yet he can only obtain together around $1,000 i m sorry is half of what it cost. He told the druggist that his mam was dying and also asked that to offer it cheaper or allow him salary later. However the druggist said: “No, I uncovered the drug and also I"m walk to make money indigenous it.” so Heinz gained desperate and broke into the man"s activities to steal the drug for his wife. Must Heinz have damaged into the activities to steal the medicine for his wife? Why or why not? 10

Based ~ above their thinking behind their responses (not even if it is they believed Heinz make the right an option or not), Kohlberg placed each human being in among the stages as described in the image on the adhering to page: