Social Interaction and the Development of Knowledge

By Jeremy I. M. Carpendale; Ulrich Miiller | Go to book overview

9
Developmental Epistemology
and Education
Leslie Smith
Lancaster University

Several distinctions cut across the argument in this chapter. One concerns individual and social contributions to cognitive development (Chapman, 1999). Another deals with causal and normative contributions to cognitive development (Bickhard, 2002). Underlying both is the ambiguity of “cognitive development. What I address in this chapter are some of the key features of a unitary framework combining individual and social contributions in a jointly causal and normative account. The argument is in two steps. One deals with development in psychology and epistemology. The proposal is for a developmental epistemology that is distinctive in two ways: (a) both individual and social elements are co-instantiated in a process of knowing, and (b) this process is empirical with both causal and normative elements. The other step deals with education interpreted through this framework. Learning through teaching is a paradigm case of social interaction. So the second step is to show how the general framework fits ngisa paradigm caseofsocialin-


DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY
AND DEVELOPMENTAL EPISTEMOLOGY

The terms cognitive and development are ubiquitous in the titles of wellknown books (e.g., Flavell, Miller, & Miller, 1993; Piaget, 1985; cf. Lourenco & Machado, 1996). However, there is ambiguity here. Children's

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