Intelligence and Development: A Cognitive Theory (Cognitive Development)

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9780631174554: Intelligence and Development: A Cognitive Theory (Cognitive Development)

In this important new book Mike Anderson argues for a theory of intelligence and development which allows a synthesis of two positions: those who believe that intelligence is a biological property of our brains, genetically determined, and those who believe that it is a property of knowledge systems and is culturally determined.

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From the Back Cover:

For the best part of a century the debate about the nature of intelligence has polarized psychologists into two camps: those who believe that intelligence is a biological property of our brains, genetically determined, and those who believe that it is a property of knowledge systems and is culturally determined.

In this important new book Mike Anderson argues for a theory of intelligence and development which allows a synthesis of these two positions. He does so by distinguishing between information processing mechanisms that acquire knowledge and knowledge itself, and shows that there are really two senses of intelligence. The first relates to individual differences, which are caused primarily by a biological variable - the speed of basic processing mechanism. This can critically constrain the acquisition of knowledge. However, because how we think also depends on the kind of information we are exposed to, variations in experience will also contribute to individual differences.

The second way of thinking about intelligence relates to the development of intelligence. Mike Anderson argues that this results not from any increase in the speed of processing with age, but from the acquisition of new competences, afforded by specialized devices (modules) that are universal and unrelated to individual differences in intelligence.

Intelligence and Development goes on to re-analyze the data on topics such as infant intelligence, mental retardation and cognitive development in the light of this theory. The result is a stimulating and interesting book that will be essential reading for anyone in the field.

About the Author:

Mike Anderson is a Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Western Australia.

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Mike Anderson
Published by Wiley-Blackwell (1992)
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Published by Wiley-Blackwell (1992)
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