A study in the Piagetian cognitive levels of development in Grade 9 students

Pritchett, Montford Leslie. (1976) A study in the Piagetian cognitive levels of development in Grade 9 students. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

It was the purpose of this study to determine the Piagetian cognitive levels of development at which Grade 9 students are working. -- A review of the literature indicated that there were four distinct Piagetian stages of cognitive development: -- 1. Sensori-motor stage (0 to 2 years old), -- 2. Pre-operational stage (2 to 7 years old), -- 3. Concrete operation stage (7 to 11 or 12 years old), -- 4. Formal operation stage (beginning at 11 or 12 years old). -- The following five tasks were chosen in an attempt to provide answers to the problem: Conservation of Matter, Conservation of Weight, Conservation of Volume, the Oscillations of the Pendulum, and Combinations of Colorless Chemicals. -- The investigator and four fellow teachers observed each of the 30 subjects individually as they investigated the tasks. The sample was randomly selected from the 200 Grade 9 students in Queen Elizabeth Regional High School, Foxtrap. -- Each student was classified into a minimum level of cognitive development utilizing the first three tasks and then he was classified into a level of cognitive development on the basis of each of the last two tasks. The percentages of students, working at the different levels of cognitive development, were determined. Levels of development were given numerical values. The performances of the three Mathematical groups, Honours, Matriculation, and Pre-Vocational, were compared on the Piagetian tasks. The implications of the study were considered. -- The major findings and conclusions of the study were as follows: -- 1. Only approximately one-third of the students were working at the level of formal reasoning and approximately two-thirds of the students were working at the concrete operational level of reasoning. -- 2. With respect to performance on the Piagetian tasks, there existed a reasonably high correlation between the streams Honours and Pre-Vocational Mathematics (r = 0.811), a moderate correlation between the streams Matriculation and Pre-Vocational Mathematics (r = 0.466), and a low correlation between the streams Honours and Matriculation Mathematics (r = 0.302). -- 3. There were significant differences in performance on the Piagetian tasks among the three groups, but this proved to exist only between the Honours Mathematics group and the Pre-vocational Mathematics group.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/7551
Item ID: 7551
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 60-63.
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1976
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Cognition--Ability testing; Mathematics--Study and teaching (Secondary)--Newfoundland and Labrador

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