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Zone of Proximal Development

  • By: Roosevelt Franklin Delano
  • In: Encyclopedia of Educational Psychology
  • Edited by: Neil J. Salkind
  • Subject:School/Educational Psychology (general), Educational Psychology, School Psychology

We cannot always build the future for our youth, but we can build our youth for the future.

Franklin DelanoRoosevelt

The concept of a zone of proximal development (ZPD) was developed by Lev Semenovich Vygotsky during the late 1920s and elaborated progressively until his death in 1934. In Mind in Society: The Development of Higher Psychological Processes, Vygotsky defined the ZPD as “the distance between the actual development level as determined by independent problem solving and the level of potential development as determined through problem solving under adult guidance or in collaboration with more capable peer” (p. 86). That is, the ZPD was understood by Vygotsky to describe the current or actual level of development of the child and the next level attainable through the use of ...

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