Samuel and Bryant (1)
Background: Samuel and Bryant is one of many studies which have attamepted to challenge Piaget's theory of cognitive development through criticsing his methods. Piaget has a structuralist approach to child development whereas Bandura describes children's development as a process of learning. Piaget believes the development, is a systematic, structured process. Jean Piaget thought that cognitive development happened in stages, and that a child would only go on to the next stage once they'd mastered the first. Each stage is like a 'building block' for the next stage to build upon. Piaget said, in each stage the child would develop new ways of thinking which had developed out of what went before, but which were different from previous ways. Piaget outlined 4 stages of cognitive development, and gave approximate ages at which children reached those stages. He stressed, these ages are only averages and that the children would go through the stages at different speeds but will always go through the stages in the same order (sequentially).
1. Sensory-motor stage (Birth to around 18 months). The child gains understanding of its environment by using its senses in combination with movement. 2. Pre-operational stage (18 months to about 7 years). The child is able to represent objects or events by symbols or signs. The child is able to use language and express ideas. The child is also developing general rules about mental operations but is still egocentric. 3. Concrete operational stage (7 years to around 12 years). The child is able to use more sophisticated mental operations. e.g. the child is said to have decentred are no longer egocentric but are still limited in a number of ways. 4. Formal operations stage (12 years and above). Most sophisticated stage of thinking, goverened by logical thinking.