Jean Piaget And Vygotsky's Theory Of Cognitive Development

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Jean Piaget and Lev Vygotsky, two of the most recognised and renowned cognitive psychologists in the world, established theories that focused on the cognitive development of children and adolescents. While similarities do exist between these psychologists’ theories, variances between their ideas are very evident. This essay will compare and contrast Jean Piaget’s Theory of Cognitive Development with Lev Vygotsky’s Socio-Cultural Theory of Cognitive Development. This essay will discuss these theories with regards to the sequence in which children’s cognitive development plays out, how cognitive development is driven, and language. This essay will also discuss how nature and nurture are related to these theories.
Piaget, a Swiss man, is interesting in the world of cognitive development as his early studies were initially directed towards biology. He trained as a philosopher and a biologist or more specifically referred to as an epistemologist. He, himself, described himself as a “genetic epistemologist,” referencing that he is, first and foremost, a biologist and a developmental psychologist second. While Piaget did study and receive his doctorate in Biology, he never pursued work in that field. Instead, he changed his career path and studied Psychology in Paris. (Mooney, 2013) Similar to Piaget, Vygotsky did not start out his career in education in the field of psychology. Vygotsky, who was from a Russian middle-class family, studied Medicine for a very short time before
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