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Psychology (Optional) Notes & Mind Maps

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    1.1 Definition of Psychology
  2. 1.2 Historical antecedents of Psychology and trends in the 21st century
  3. 1.3 Psychology and scientific methods
  4. 1.4 Psychology in relation to other social sciences and natural sciences
  5. 1.5 Application of Psychology to societal problems
    2.1 Types of research: Descriptive, evaluative, diagnostic, and prognostic
  7. 2.2 Methods of Research: Survey, observation, case-study, and experiments
  8. 2.3 Experimental, Non-Experimental and Quasi-Experimental Designs
  9. 2.4 Focused group discussions
  10. 2.5 Brainstorming
  11. 2.6 Grounded theory approach
    3.1 Major Steps in Psychological research
    6 Submodules
  13. 3.2 Fundamental versus applied research
  14. 3.3 Methods of Data Collection
    3 Submodules
  15. 3.4 Research designs (ex-post facto and experimental)
  16. 3.5 Application of Statistical Technique
    5 Submodules
  17. 3.6 Item Response Theory
    4.1 Growth and Development, Principles of Development
  19. 4.2 Role of genetic and environmental factors in determining human behavior
  20. 4.3 Influence of cultural factors in socialization
  21. 4.4 Life span development (Characteristics, development tasks, promoting psychological well-being across major stages of the life span)
    5.1 Sensation
    2 Submodules
  23. 5.2 Attention: factors influencing attention
    1 Submodule
  24. 5.3 Perception
    11 Submodules
  25. 6. LEARNING
    6.1 Concept and theories of learning (Behaviourists, Gestaltalist and Information processing models)
  26. 6.2 The Processes of extinction, discrimination, and generalization
  27. 6.3 Programmed learning
  28. 6.4 Probability Learning
  29. 6.5 Self-Instructional Learning
  30. 6.6 Types and the schedules of reinforcement
  31. 6.7 Escape, Avoidance and Punishment
  32. 6.8 Modeling
  33. 6.9 Social Learning
  34. 7. MEMORY
    7.1 Encoding and Remembering
  35. 7.2 Short term memory
  36. 7.3 Long term memory
  37. 7.4 Sensory Memory - Iconic, Echoic & Haptic Memory
  38. 7.5 Multistore Model of Memory
  39. 7.6 Levels of Processing
  40. 7.7 Organization and Mnemonic techniques to improve memory
  41. 7.8 Theories of forgetting: decay, interference and retrieval failure
  42. 7.9 Metamemory
    8.1 Piaget’s theory of cognitive development
  44. 8.2 Concept formation processes
  45. 8.3 Information Processing
  46. 8.4 Reasoning and problem-solving
  47. 8.5 Facilitating and hindering factors in problem-solving
  48. 8.6 Methods of problem-solving: Creative thinking and fostering creativity
  49. 8.7 Factors influencing decision making and judgment
  50. 8.8 Recent Trends in Thinking and Problem Solving
  51. 9. Motivation and Emotion
    9.1 Psychological and physiological basis of motivation and emotion
  52. 9.2 Measurement of motivation and emotion
  53. 9.3 Effects of motivation and emotion on behavior
  54. 9.4 Extrinsic and intrinsic motivation
  55. 9.5 Factors influencing intrinsic motivation
  56. 9.6 Emotional competence and the related issues
  57. 10. Intelligence and Aptitude
    10.1 Concept of intelligence and aptitude
  58. 10.2 Nature and theories of intelligence: Spearman, Thurstone, Guilford Vernon, Sternberg and J.P Das
  59. 10.3 Emotional Intelligence
  60. 10.4 Social Intelligence
  61. 10.5 Measurement of intelligence and aptitudes
  62. 10.6 Concept of IQ
  63. 10.7 Deviation IQ
  64. 10.8 The constancy of IQ
  65. 10.9 Measurement of multiple intelligence
  66. 10.10 Fluid intelligence and crystallized intelligence
  67. 11. Personality
    11.1 Definition and concept of personality
  68. 11.2 Theories of personality (psychoanalytical, sociocultural, interpersonal, developmental, humanistic, behaviouristic, trait and type approaches)
  69. 11.3 Measurement of personality (projective tests, pencil-paper test)
  70. 11.4 The Indian approach to personality
  71. 11.5 Training for personality development
  72. 11.6 Latest approaches like big 5-factor theory
  73. 11.7 The notion of self in different traditions
  74. 12. Attitudes, Values, and Interests
    12.1 Definition of attitudes, values, and interests
  75. 12.2 Components of attitudes
  76. 12.3 Formation and maintenance of attitudes
  77. 12.4 Measurement of attitudes, values, and interests
  78. 12.5 Theories of attitude change
  79. 12.6 Strategies for fostering values
  80. 12.7 Formation of stereotypes and prejudices
  81. 12.8 Changing others behavior
  82. 12.9 Theories of attribution
  83. 12.10 Recent trends in Attitudes, Values and Interests
  84. 13. Language and Communication
    13.1 Properties of Human Language
  85. 13.2 Structure of language and linguistic hierarchy
  86. 13.3 Language acquisition: Predisposition & critical period hypothesis
  87. 13.4 Theories of language development: Skinner and Chomsky
Module 43 of 87
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8.1 Piaget’s theory of cognitive development


A. Explanation of Jean Piaget:

  • Jean Piaget was a Swiss psychologist who lived from 1896 to 1980.
  • He is best known for his pioneering work in child development and the field of cognitive psychology.
  • Piaget’s theories have had a profound influence on our understanding of how children learn and develop.

B. Importance of Piaget’s theory of cognitive development:

  • Piaget’s theory of cognitive development is one of the most influential theories in the field of psychology.
  • It provides a framework for understanding how children develop their cognitive abilities from infancy to adolescence.
  • Piaget’s theory emphasizes the importance of active exploration and experimentation in learning.
  • It has influenced educational practices around the world, particularly in the areas of constructivism and active learning.

Background Information

Life and work of Jean Piaget

  • Born in Switzerland in 1896
  • Studied biology and philosophy
  • Worked as a researcher at the Binet Institute in Paris
  • Developed his theory of cognitive development through observations of children
  • Published more than 50 books and articles on psychology and education
  • Died in 1980

Definition of cognitive development

  • Refers to the process by which children acquire knowledge and understanding of the world around them
  • Involves changes in thinking, reasoning, and problem-solving abilities
  • Occurs through interaction with the environment and through maturation of the brain

Theoretical foundation of Piaget’s theory

  • Piaget’s theory is based on the idea that children actively construct their own understanding of the world
  • Children go through a series of four distinct stages of cognitive development
  • These stages are based on the child’s ability to think abstractly and logically, and to understand cause-and-effect relationships
  • Piaget believed that cognitive development occurs through a process of adaptation, which involves assimilation and accommodation

Piaget’s Four Stages of Cognitive Development

A. Sensorimotor Stage (0-2 years)

  • Characterized by the child’s use of senses and motor skills to explore and learn about the environment
  • Key developments during this stage include:
    • Accommodation and assimilation: the child adjusts their existing schemas (mental frameworks) to incorporate new information
    • Object permanence: the understanding that objects continue to exist even when they cannot be seen or heard

B. Preoperational Stage (2-7 years)

  • Characterized by the child’s use of symbols and language to represent objects and ideas
  • Key developments during this stage include:
    • Symbolic thought and play: the ability to use symbols (such as words or images) to represent objects or ideas
    • Egocentrism: the tendency to view the world solely from one’s own perspective

C. Concrete Operational Stage (7-11 years)

  • Characterized by the child’s ability to think logically and understand cause-and-effect relationships
  • Key developments during this stage include:
    • Conservation: the understanding that changes in the appearance of objects do not change their basic properties
    • Classification: the ability to group objects based on shared characteristics

D. Formal Operational Stage (11 years and up)

  • Characterized by the child’s ability to think abstractly and hypothetically
  • Key developments during this stage include:
    • Hypothetical-deductive reasoning: the ability to use logic and deductive reasoning to solve problems
    • Abstract thinking: the ability to think about concepts and ideas that are not directly tied to concrete objects or experiences

Criticisms and Contributions of Piaget’s Theory

A. Criticisms

  • Age ranges: Some researchers have argued that Piaget’s age ranges for each stage are too rigid and do not accurately reflect individual differences in cognitive development.
  • Cultural bias: Piaget’s theory is based on observations of Western, middle-class children and may not be applicable to children from other cultures.
  • Underestimation of the role of social interactions: Piaget’s theory does not fully consider the impact of social interactions and cultural context on cognitive development.

B. Contributions

  • Exploration of children’s thought processes: Piaget’s theory has provided valuable insights into the ways in which children think and learn about the world around them.
  • Influence on educational practices: Piaget’s theory has had a significant impact on educational practices, particularly in the areas of constructivism and active learning.


A. Implications for teaching and learning

  • Constructivism: Piaget’s theory suggests that children construct their own understanding of the world through active exploration and experimentation, so educators should focus on creating environments that encourage such exploration.
  • Active learning: Piaget’s theory emphasizes the importance of hands-on, experiential learning that allows children to construct their own knowledge.
  • Problem-solving activities: Piaget’s theory suggests that problem-solving activities can be an effective way to help children develop their cognitive abilities and construct new knowledge.

B. Implications for parenting

  • Stimulating cognitive development: Parents can stimulate their children’s cognitive development by providing opportunities for exploration and experimentation, encouraging questions and curiosity, and providing appropriate challenges and feedback.
  • Encouraging exploration and experimentation: Piaget’s theory suggests that children learn best through active exploration and experimentation, so parents can encourage this by providing a safe and stimulating environment for their children to explore.
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