Cognitive Revolution - of
Cognition (thought) or
mental processes involved in
acquiring knowledge, has
been studies since the first
Now we don’t use
was unreliable, but
processes such as
problem solving and
Properties of Language -1. Language
is symbolic. 2. Language is semantic.
3. Language is generative. 4. Language
Terms - Phonemes: smallest units of
speech that can be distinguished
perceptually. Morphemes: smallest units
of meaning in a language. Semantics:
meaning of words. Syntax: rules that
state how words can be arranged into
First year development - 12 – 18
months – one word sentence E.g.
“juice” meaning, “I’d like some juice
please”. They know 3-50 words at this
Bilingualism - Bilingualism
refers to learning 2 languages.
There are some cognitive
advantages though processing
speed can be slower. Bilingual
students are somewhat higher
in their cognitive flexibility,
reasoning, attention and
metalinguistic awareness. If
people learn their native
language first and then a
second language, it is easier if
they learn younger.
Theories of Language -
. Behaviourist Theories: According to B.F.
Skinner, children learn through imitation,
reinforcement and conditioning.
2. Nativist Theories: Noam Chomsky and
others argue that it is impossible for children
to hear every possible sentence and be
reinforced for it or to imitate it.
3. Interactionist Theories: Interactionist
theorists combine biology and experience.
Linguistic relativity hypothesis – one’s
language determines the nature of
thought. Different languages lead people
to view the world differently.
Effects on problem solving - 1. Irrelevant Information: In
problem solving, people may pay too much attention to
information that does not solve the problem. 2. Functional
Fixedness - This comes from Gestalt psychology and refers to
thinking of something only in terms of its most common use.
Hinder problem solving - 3. Mental Set -
continuing to use a problem solving
strategy that worked in the past when it is
not the best solution. Being in a rut in your
thinking. & 4. Unnecessary constraints:
Constraints are the limits. If you put
unnecessary limits on yourself, it will be
harder to solve the problem.
Solving Problems - Trial and error - try
something to see if it works and if not
don’t use it again until you find what
works. Algorithm - methodical,
step-by-step procedure for trying all the
possible alternatives for reaching a
solution to a problem. Heuristics -
mental shortcuts, guiding principle or
“rule of thumb” used to solve problems
or make decisions.