Compare And Contrast Piaget And Vygotsky

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Cognitive development is the process of the mental activity within the human brain. This involves the method of thinking, memory and perception. Oakley (2004, p.2) states that ‘As a child develops, their thinking changes’. In this essay, I will compare and contrast two cognitive theories in child development and define how these theories might be applied by professionals working with children and families.
Piaget and Vygotsky are both cognitive theorists. They established that cognitive development took place in stages, but they have dissimilar styles of thinking.
Piaget referred to the central ways of constructing and processing information as a cognitive framework. He understood that every child goes through four diverse stages of cognitive development, these are, sensorimotor, preoperational, concrete operational and formal operational. The study by Lindon (2012, p.34) shows that ‘Piaget explained that young children construct their understanding of the world through their use of schemas’.
A schema is a term to explain concepts in actions. Birth to two years old, Piaget named this stage of life as sensorimotor. This is where the babies learn various things by using their physical abilities such as crawling and grasping. As
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Piaget believed in biological maturation whereas Vygotsky believed that social and cultural influences help a child mature. Piaget also does not put much emphasis on the language of the child, however, Vygotsky stresses the importance of language within the cognitive development. In Piaget's view about the role of language, the egocentric speech of young children reflects the child's inability to take the perspective of others. In contrast, Vygotsky thought the egocentric speech is an extremely important developmental phenomenon. He believed that it helps children organise and regulate their thinking and egocentric speech has both intellectual and self regulatory functions for young

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