Comparing and Contrasting Theories of Cognitive Development

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Comparing the four main theories of Cognitive Development for the AQA (B) Specification

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Comparing and Contrasting Theories of Cognitive Development
1 Piaget
1.1 Child's thinking develops through active exploration of the environment and that children construct their own knowledge through play and experience
1.2 His theory is similar to the Informational Processing approach, as they both describe the child going through four stages to develop their cognitive abilities.
1.3 His theory is different to the approach proposed by Vygotsky, whose approach is unlike Piagets in the fact that he proposed children are taught different abilities as opposed to discovering them
2 Vygotsky
2.1 His theory proposed the importance of adults in the development of a childs cognitive abilities, stating how children are taught these abilities before having independance given to them.
2.2 Vygotsky's theory is different to Piaget's, as unlike piaget he placed an emphasis on the role of adults in the development of a child, stating how they need to be encouraged as opposed to letting them discover the abilities on their own.
2.3 Theory of Cognitive Development
3 Nativist
3.1 We are born with an innate cognitive structures which determine cognitive ability. Any developmental changes are simply due to genetic pre-disposition.
3.2 Similar to Piaget's theory in that they both state how we are born with some innate cognitive abilities
3.3 The theory is different to Vygotsky with the Nature/Nurture debate. Nativist is highly Nature, whereas Vygotsky is highly nurture
4 Informational Processing Approach
4.1 I.P Approach is different to Piaget's theory as the data collected is different. I.P is Quantitative, Piaget is Qualititative
4.2 (See Piaget for similarity)
4.3 Focuses on problem solving, memory and how humans are similar to computers

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