Ecological Approach to Perceptual Learning and Development

ISBN-10: 0195165497
ISBN-13: 9780195165494
Edition: 2003
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Description: The essential nature of learning is primarily thought of as a verbal process or function, but this notion conveys that pre-linguistic infants do not learn. Far from being "blank slates" that passively absorb environmental stimuli, infants are active  More...

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Book details

List price: $56.00
Copyright year: 2003
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
Publication date: 5/15/2003
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 248
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.792
Language: English

The essential nature of learning is primarily thought of as a verbal process or function, but this notion conveys that pre-linguistic infants do not learn. Far from being "blank slates" that passively absorb environmental stimuli, infants are active learners who perceptually engage their environments and extract information from them before language is available. The ecological approach to perceiving-defined as "a theory about perceiving by active creatures who look and listen and move around" was spearheaded by Eleanor and James Gibson in the 1950s and culminated in James Gibson's last book in 1979. Until now, no comprehensive theoretical statement of ecological development has been published since Eleanor Gibson's Principles of Perceptual Learning and Development (1969). In An Ecological Approach to Perceptual Learning and Development, distinguished experimental psychologists Eleanor J. Gibson and Anne D. Pick provide a unique theoretical framework for the ecological approach to understanding perceptual learning and development. Perception, in accordance with James Gibson's views, entails a reciprocal relationship between a person and his or her environment: the environment provides resources and opportunities for the person, and the person gets information from and acts on the environment. The concept of affordance is central to this idea; the person acts on what the environment affords, as it is appropriate. This extraordinary volume covers the development of perception in detail from birth through toddlerhood, beginning with the development of communication, going on to perceiving and acting on objects, and then to locomotion. It is more than a presentation of facts about perception as it develops. It outlines the ecological approach and shows how it underlies "higher" cognitive processes, such as concept formation, as well as discovery of the basic affordances of the environment. This impressive work should serve as the capstone for Eleanor J. Gibson's distinguished career as a developmental and experimental psychologist.

Historical Perspectives and Present-Day Confrontations
An Ecological Approach to Perceptual Development
Studying Perceptual Development in Preverbal Infants: Tasks, Methods, and Motivation
Development and Learning in Infancy
What Infants Learn About: Communication
What Infants Learn About: Interaction with Objects
What Infants Learn About: Locomotion and the Spatial Layout
The Learning Process in Infancy: Facts and Theory
Hallmarks of Human Behavior
The Role of Perception in Development beyond Infancy
References
Index

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