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Piaget’s Theory vs Vygotsky’s Theory on Child Development

Piaget’s Theory vs Vygotsky’s Theory on Child Development

Piaget’s Theory of child development posits that cognitive development happens in stages. They include the sensorimotor, preoperational, concrete operational, and formal operational stages (Meadows, 2017). Consequently, Vygotsky’s Theory posits that social interactions can mediate and guide a child’s cognitive development. According to Kozulin (2015), Vygotsky’s Theory is founded on a sociocultural theory that suggests that children learn and adopt the attitudes and beliefs they see in their environment. One of the main differences between the two theories is that Piaget’s Theory suggests that cognitive development starts from within, while Vygotsky’s Theory suggests that cognitive development starts from the outside because it is influenced by external factors such as the people the child interacts with and their culture. The second difference is that Piaget’s Theory is structural due to the assumption that psychological stages influence cognitive development.

In contrast, Vygotsky’s Theory is constructive because it focuses on acquiring knowledge as a cumulative event, including new understandings and experiences integrated into existing cognitive structures. The third difference is that Piaget’s Theory assumes that cognitive development is universal across different cultures. In contrast, Vygotsky’s Theory assumes that cognitive development differs among people from different cultures. The fourth difference is that Piaget’s Theory assumes that thought arises from language because language relies on the child’s cognitive development. In contrast, Vygotsky’s Theory assumes that language and thought are separate and merge when a child is three years old, leading to speech development. Piaget emphasizes the significance of peer interactions in promoting cognitive development, while Vygotsky emphasizes transmitting cultural tools to help a child adapt intellectually. Piaget’s Theory also assumes that a child’s development must occur before they learn. Consequently, Vygotsky’s Theory assumes that learning is a universal and essential part of the process of developing specifically human, culturally structured psychological functions. Hire our assignment writing services in case your assignment is devastating you.

The two theorists also have contrasting thoughts about egocentric speech. According to Sasso & de Morais (2014), egocentric speech is a type of speech where there is no attempt to consider the other person’s perspective or exchange thoughts. Piaget’s theory assumes that egocentric speech proves that children are self-centered and cannot see things from another person’s point of view. In contrast, Vygotsky’s Theory assumes that egocentric speech occurs as children develop from language as a communication tool used in social communication to language as a private mode of communication, speech, and inner thought. Therefore, based on Vygotsky’s theory, children must first develop language as a communication tool before developing into private speech and inner speech to develop egocentric speech. Another difference between the two theories is that Piaget’s Theory assumes that maturation levels influence a child’s cognitive development rate. Therefore, cognitive development increases as the child continues to mature. In contrast, Vygotsky’s Theory assumes that children are born with private essential functions that enable them to develop cognitively despite their maturation levels.

Another major difference between the two theorists is that they view cognitive development differently. Piaget’s Theory views children as scientists who explore their environment to understand it without the intervention of adults. In contrast, Vygotsky’s theory views children as apprentices who learn through the social environment in which they live with other people, with more experience and sensitivity to the children’s abilities and needs. Vygotsky’s Theory assumes that adults can facilitate a child’s cognitive development by engaging them in expressive and thought-provoking activities (Mcleod, 2022). Therefore, a child’s cognitive development can be improved by exposure to challenging and meaningful activities, the same way apprenticeship focuses on improving people’s knowledge, skills, and abilities by engaging in selected activities.

References

Mcleod, S. (2022). Vygotsky’s Sociocultural Theory of Cognitive Development. Lev Vygotsky’s Sociocultural Theory – Simply Psychology. Retrieved February 14, 2023, from https://www.simplypsychology.org/vygotsky.html

Sasso, B. A., & de Morais, A. (2014). Egocentric Speech in the Works of Vygotsky and Piaget: Educational Implications and Representations by Teachers. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 4.

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Piaget’s Theory vs Vygotsky’s Theory on Child Development

Piaget’s Theory vs Vygotsky’s Theory on Child Development

Write a 2-3 page paper on how Piaget’s theory differs from Lev Vygotsky’s theory as it relates to how children learn and interact.

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