Jean Piaget

(1896-1980)

Background

Jean William Fritz Piaget was born in the barnyard of a hospital on August 9th in Neuchatel Switzerland. Jean was the son of Arthur Piaget and Rebecca Jackson. Jean was educated at the University of Neuchatel and studied briefly at the University of Zurich. In 1923 he married Valentine Chatenay. The couple had three kids Jacqueline, Laurent, and Lucienne. Piaget spent 50 years of his life studying children. Piaget was first interested in Freudian theories, however while studying in Sorbonne, Paris he began his studies on Cognitive Development. Died September 16th 1980 in Geneva Switzerland.

Cognitive Development

Jean Piaget's approach was Cognitive Development. According to Cognitive Development children progress through a series of four stages. Stage 1 is sensorimotor stage from birth to the age of 2. Stage 2 is preoperational stage from 2 through 7. Stage 3 is the concrete operation stage from 7 to 11. Stage 4 is the formal operation stage which begins in adolescence. During the sensorimotor stage infants acquire information through sensory experiences and manipulating objects. During the preoperational stage children struggle with logic and taking other people's point of view but can pretend play. During the concrete operational stage kids begin to think more logically but tend to struggle with abstract and hypothetical concepts. In the last stage the formal operation stage children's logic increases and have a better understanding of abstract ideas and have the ability to use deductive reasoning.

Criticism

Piaget received a considerable amount of criticism for his approach. Piaget was criticized on his research methods. Another problem was that children just automatically move on to the next stage. Piaget's research group were kids from well educated schools and people criticized that this method did not give a fair representation of his approach

Sources

Kendra, Cherry. 1994. Support and Criticism of Jean Piaget. Retrieved from http://psychology.about.com/od/piagetstheory/p/piagetcriticism.htm


Kendra, Cherry. 1994. Piaget's Stages of Cognitive Development. Retrieved from http://psychology.about.com/od/piagetstheory/a/keyconcepts.htm