Jean Piaget defined himself as a 'genetic' epistemologist, interested in the process of the qualitative development of knowledge. As he says in the introduction of his book Genetic Epistemology (ISBN 978-0-393-00596-7): "What the genetic epistemology proposes is discovering the roots of the different varieties of knowledge, since its elementary forms, following to the next levels, including also the scientific knowledge."
He believed answers for the epistemological questions at his time could be answered, or better proposed, if one looked to the genetic aspect of it, hence his experimentations with children and adolescents. Piaget considered cognitive structures development as a differentiation of biological regulations. In one of his last books, Equilibration of Cognitive Structures: The Central Problem of Intellectual Development (ISBN 978-022666781), he intends to explain knowledge development as a process of equilibration using two main concepts in his theory, assimilation and accommodation, as belonging not only to biological interactions but also to cognitive ones.
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Famous quotes containing the word theory:
“... the first reason for psychologys failure to understand what people are and how they act, is that clinicians and psychiatrists, who are generally the theoreticians on these matters, have essentially made up myths without any evidence to support them; the second reason for psychologys failure is that personality theory has looked for inner traits when it should have been looking for social context.”
—Naomi Weisstein (b. 1939)
“By the mud-sill theory it is assumed that labor and education are incompatible; and any practical combination of them impossible. According to that theory, a blind horse upon a tread-mill, is a perfect illustration of what a laborer should beall the better for being blind, that he could not tread out of place, or kick understandingly.... Free labor insists on universal education.”
—Abraham Lincoln (18091865)
“The whole theory of modern education is radically unsound. Fortunately in England, at any rate, education produces no effect whatsoever. If it did, it would prove a serious danger to the upper classes, and probably lead to acts of violence in Grosvenor Square.”
—Oscar Wilde (18541900)