Muskaan Mahal & Sanggavi Jeyaramachandra



Jean William Fritz Piaget

Born: August 9 1896

Died: September 16 1980

He was a developmental psychologist and philosopher

Known for his studies with children

Born in Neuchatel, Switzerland

His father, Arthur Piaget was a professor of medieval literature

Jean Piaget was the first psychologist to make a systematic study of cognitive development

Synopsis Of Theory

According to Piaget, children’s thought processes change as they mature physically and interact with the world around them. Piaget believed children develop schema, or mental models, to represent the world. As children learn, they expand and modify their schema through the processes of assimilation and accommodation. Assimilation is the broadening of an existing schema to include new information. Accommodation is the modification of a schema as new information is incorporated.

Through his observations of his own children, Piaget developed a theory of development that included four stages.

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During the early stages, infants are only aware of what is immediately in front of them. They focus on what they see, what they are doing, and physical interactions with their immediate environment. Because they don't yet know how things react, they're constantly experimenting with activities such as shaking or throwing things, putting things in their mouths, and learning about the world through trial and error. The later stages include goal-oriented behaviour which brings about a desired result. Between ages 7 and 9 months, infants begin to realize that an object exists even if it can no longer be seen.


At age 2 to 4 , Increased use of verbal representation but speech is egocentric (an inability to differentiate between self and other). The beginnings of symbolic rather than simple motor play. Can think about something without the object being present by use of language.

From ages 4 to 7, Speech becomes more social, less egocentric. The child has an intuitive grasp of logical concepts in some areas. However, there is still a tendency to focus attention on one aspect of an object while ignoring others.

By observing other people's behaviour, expressions, comments, and appearance they can interpret this information and make reasonable guesses about what another person may be thinking, wanting, needing, or feeling.


Children may feel exceptionally unique and different from other people. Piaget called this the "personal fable." Some kids feel as though they are better, smarter, or stronger than others.This personal fable can lead to some devastating consequences because these youth may take dangerous risks when they over-estimate their abilities and believe they can "handle it," or mistakenly believe they are powerful and that bad things cannot happen to them.

Other children may feel as though they are dumber, weaker, and inferior to others. This kind of personal fable can lead to feelings of sadness, frustration, and loneliness. If these negative thoughts and feelings continue to strengthen, kids can become depressed or hopeless, which can lead to other dangerous behaviours. Which is why children need their caregivers' love, guidance, and support to help them through difficult circumstances.

Piaget's stages of cognitive development



Sigismund Schlomo Freud

Born: May 6, 1856

Died: September 23, 1939

Was an Austrian neurologist

Known as the founding father of psychoanalysis

Born in town Moravian, Austrian Empire (now part of the Czech Republic)

Eldest of 8 children

Father was a wool merchant with 2 sons from first marriage

Planned to study law, joined medicine instead and studied philosophy, physiology and zoology


Freud presented the theory of psychosexual development. His theory explains how personality develops over the course of childhood. Freud believed that personality develops through a series of childhood stages in which the pleasure-seeking energies of the id (personality component made up of unconscious psychic energy that works to satisfy basic urges, needs, and desires) become focused on certain erogenous sectors. Freud made 5 stages out of his theory:

STAGE 1- The Oral Stage; birth to 1 year

STAGE 2- The Anal Stage; 1 to 3 years

STAGE 3- The Phallic Stage; 3 to 6 years

STAGE 4- The Latent Period; 6 to puberty

STAGE 5- The Genital Stage; puberty to death

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Sigmund Freud believed that each stage of a child’s development beginning at birth is directly related to specific needs and demands, each based on a particular body part and all rooted in a sexual base. Freud offered dynamic and psychological explanations for human behaviour. He conceptualized what we call the psycho-sexual stages of development. Freud believed that there are specific stages in which an individual has a specific need, and gratification during each stage is important to prevent an individual from becoming fixated in any particular level.


Sigmund Freud's account of oral, anal, and genital stages of development were spread over with emotion, but recent accounts of development have tended to neglect emotions.
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According to Freud, human behaviour, experience, and cognition are largely determined by unconscious drives and events in early childhood. Psychoanalysis is a clinical method for treating psychopathology through dialogue between a patient and a psychoanalyst. The specifics of the analyst's interventions typically include confronting and clarifying the patient's pathological defenses, wishes, and guilt. The id is the completely unconscious, impulsive, child-like portion of the psyche that operates on the "pleasure principle" and is the source of basic impulses and drives. The ego acts according to the reality principle (i.e., it seeks to please the id's drive in realistic ways that will benefit in the long term rather than bringing grief). The super-ego aims for perfection. It compromises that organized part of the personality structure.
Freud's Psychoanalytic Theory on Instincts: Motivation, Personality and Development