• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

‘At the end of the day, what is crucial is to enable educationalists to promote and apply their own metatheories and models of child development which they feel comfortable with and which enable children to develop. … Peter Sutherland should be credited with making a significant contribution towards achieving this fundamental goal’ - Educational Psychology in Practice

‘… this book deserves to become a classic in the field. Will appeal alike to academics and students in higher education, and to serving teachers- BPS: Educational Review Section

This book provides a general outline of the dominant schools of thought on cognitive development, with a focus on Piaget. His views are outlined and a range of critical responses and alternatives are detailed. The author examines the application of these schools of thought to teaching pre-school, primary and secondary children. Each chapter includes a summary and questions for discussion. The book concludes with a glossary of terms.


Reuven Feuerstein (the Israeli remedial educationist) has made one of the strongest responses to the determinism implied by Piaget's theory. ‘If there are limits, I don't know them’, he claimed when interviewed on BBC television. He argues that intelligence can be improved at any age. His work has concentrated mainly on disturbed adolescents from 12 to 14. He has concentrated his efforts on helping those with learning difficulties rather than offering ideas for all pupils. But there is no reason why his ideas should not be applied to pupils who are at an average level or who are doing well. His concepts have been used to stimulate gifted pupils.

Feuerstein's is not a deficit theory: he claims to be able to help the slow learner ...

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