The development and validation of an instrument designed to measure a pre-school child's ability to discern relationships in several perceptual arrays

Mastropietro, Linda Gaze (1978) The development and validation of an instrument designed to measure a pre-school child's ability to discern relationships in several perceptual arrays. 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

The purpose of this study was to determine the applicability of an instrument used to distinguish various levels of proficiency in concept formation of children at the pre-school level. This instrument as designed permits a child to distinguish a relationship in a given group of perceptual arrays and then to verbalize it. By this means the abstract notion of "conceptualizing" can be turned into an objective task. -- The methodological constructs of the instrument were based on the conceptual process theories of Bolton, Bruner, Piaget, Polanyi, Rommetveit, Rommetveit and Kvale, and Taba. Without exception, all of these theorists hold that the ability to discern relationships in a perceptual array is an intimate aspect of initial conceptual processes. -- Fifteen tasks were devised which allowed children to make distinctions in perceptual arrays. Each subject's responses to the tasks were tape-recorded and later transcribed. Each distinction was rated according to the three-stage conceptual process theory of Rommetveit. Responses to the 15 tasks were rated a total of four times, by the medium of Rommetveit's notion of three stages in concept formation. The Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test was also administered to the same children. The instrument was administered to 17 children in attendance at Memorial University Pre-School in St. John's, Newfoundland. (This was the largest available target population.) -- Through the use of Pearson Product-Moment Coefficient Correlations, proficiency in rating the tasks using Rommetveit's three-stage concept formation theory was established. The statistics reflected a high correlation between the ratings of the task responses. Further, by the mechanics of Pearson Product-Moment Coefficients and factor analysis, a relationship was established between tested proficiency of the child and proficiency in the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test. The results indicated that the instrument clearly showed the emergence of two orthogonal dimensions. In light of the immediate data, neither of these dimensions apparently relates to the Peabody. -- It is suggested that further research be conducted to identify more specifically the dimensions in the designed instrument.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/7826
Item ID: 7826
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 45-48. -- QEII has photocopy.
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1978
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Concept learning

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