Development Of Jean Piaget's Theory Of Cognitive Development
This final stage encompasses adolescence and adults alike, and is defined predominantly by its usage of abstract thinking and its ability to solve problems using logic and reasoning. During this time, people are able to think of things in a more hypothetical sense, rather than just seeing things on a “surface” level. It is believed- by Piaget- that many are not able to reach this stage of development.
Assimilation is the ability to incorporate new material or information into existing schemas or mental frameworks. For example, an art student learning new techniques for his medium, would add this new information into an already existing schema for art techniques.
Accommodation, on the other hand, is reconstructing existing schemas to incorporate new information. This happens when newly gained information does not fit with previous thoughts. This can be seen when one’s stereotypes or prejudiced behavior is challenged and causes their opinion toward that matter to change. For example, an individual may believe that all atheists are evil, however after seeing one perform a kind act, they may instead think that only some atheists are evil.