Cognitive development encompasses a broad field of study that concerns the nature and origins of knowledge and the mental processes involved in acquiring, organizing, and using that knowledge to make sense of the world. Cognitive development is also an umbrella term that covers a wide range of topics, including attention, perception, memory, and language, as well academic subjects such as reading and mathematical and scientific reasoning.

Given the vastness of the subject matter, it is beyond the scope of this entry to offer an adequate description of the developing cognitive landscape of childhood, and the reader is referred to other sources. Here, the goal is to provide an overview of the core questions and long-standing theoretical debates that have guided research in the field and to ...

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