Psychology Dictionary of Arguments

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Logic: logic is the doctrine of the admissibility or inadmissibility of relations between statements and thus the validity of the compositions of these statements. In particular, the question is whether conclusions can be obtained from certain presuppositions such as premises or antecedents. Logical formulas are not interpreted at first. Only the interpretation, i. e. the insertion of values, e.g. objects instead of the free variables, makes the question of their truth meaningful.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

Jean Piaget on Logic - Dictionary of Arguments

Upton I 93
1. Donaldson (1978)(1) (…) criticised the procedural aspect of [Piaget’s] tasks. In the classic Piagetian conservation tasks (Cf. >Classes/Piaget, >Numbers/Piaget), the same question is usually asked twice in order to test the child’s reasoning – once before any changes are made and then again after the transformation. However, if the children are only asked the question once, after the transformation, more of the younger group get the answer right. According to Donaldson, this is because children learn to make sense of adults’ questions in teaching and testing situations. The child is not only trying to work out
Upton I 94
what the meaning of the task is, but also trying to work out the demands of the social relations in which the task is embedded. A key part of this process is trying to guess what answer the adult expects, and what response will please them most (Donaldson, 1978)(1).
2. Wheldall and Poborca (1980)(2) also agreed that the wording of the question prevents the children giving the correct answer to conservation tasks. They therefore used a non-verbal version of the beaker task and found that twice as many children could conserve using this task than in the original approach.
3. Information-processing models provide a different challenge to Piaget’s theory. Donaldson and others criticised Piaget for the tasks he used, suggesting that they did not allow younger children to demonstrate their logical reasoning. However, the assumption was still that human reasoning depends upon having mental structures for logical thinking (…).
Information-processing models consider this problem from a different angle. They suggest that children cannot do these tasks because of the demands on processes such as memory and attention, which are still developing at this age.
VsVs: In response, supporters of Piaget’s theory (neo-Piagetians) have taken some of these ideas from information processing and integrated them with Piaget’s original theory. For example, it is argued that development through the stages (and changes in logical structures) is made possible by increases in working memory capacity and processing efficiency (Demetriou et al., 2002)(3).

1. Donaldson, M. (1978) Children’s Minds. London: Croom Helm.
2. Wheldhall, K and Poborca, B. (1980) Conservation without conversation? An alternative non-verbal paradigm for assessing conservation of liquid quantity. British Journal of Psychology, 71: 117–34.
3. Demetriou, A, Christou, C, Spanoudis, G and Platsidou, M (2002) The development of mental processing: efficiency, working memory, and thinking. Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development, 67(1): serial no. 268.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Piag I
J. Piaget
The Psychology Of The Child 2nd Edition 1969

Upton I
Penney Upton
Developmental Psychology 2011

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