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Directions for “Cognitive Development” Essay

1. Access the textbook website:

2. Click on the PsychSim Tutorials link
3. In the left column, find Chapter 04

“Psychsim5: Cognitive Development” and click on this link.

Click on “Cognitive Development” and begin the tutorial. Answer the questions and attach to the email in IT’S LEARNING. This is due no later than midnight Tuesday, September 22. Late submissions will be deducted 20 pts per school day late.


Name: Faye Simshauser

This activity describes Piaget’s theory of the growth of intelligence and simulates the performance of three children of different ages on some of Piaget’s tasks.


1. What are schemas?
-A schema is the way we make sense of the world by organizing what we know into a mental framework.

2. Explain the difference between assimilation and accommodation. -Assimilation means incorporating new experiences into our existing framework or understanding. When we encounter a new situation, we first try to apply your existing schemas, and then we see what happens. If it fits well into our old schemas, we are satisfied. But if the new experience doesn’t fit, we need to modify our schemas. This process of adjusting our old frameworks is called accommodation. Sometimes we only need to make slight modifications in our schemas. In other situations we may need to make major changes, or even create new schemas.

3. Suppose that a 15-month-old toddler has learned to call the four-legged house pet a “doggie.” What do you think would happen if the child sees a horse for the first time? Is the child likely to call the horse a “horsie” or a “doggie” or a “doggie-horse” or some other term? Write your best guess in the space below, and add a sentence explaining why you think the child would use that term to refer to the horse. -The child after seeing a horse for the first time will call it a “doggie” because of its existing schema with associating four-legged animals with dogs.

Stages of Development

4. What are some characteristics of a child in the sensorimotor stage of development? -In the sensorimotor stage of development, the child’s intelligence is consumed with mostly sensations and motor skills. The child’s thoughts are limited to the sensations being experience and the objects being acted upon that moment.

5. What is object permanence?

-Object permanence is the awareness that things continue to exist even when out of sight.

6. What are some cognitive limitations of preschoolers?

-Although able to think symbolically and gain memory and language developments, preschoolers still lack certain mental operations that form the basis of adult logic. The children make errors on problems that involve changes in the appearance of objects.

7. What is egocentrism?

-Egocentrism is the inability to take another’s perspective or point of view into account. Egocentrism is the reason why children stand in front of the television sometimes when others are watching behind them; they think that everyone can see what they see.

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