Sociocultural Theory

Lev Semenovich Vygotsky
 

proposed the sociocultural theory Born in Orsha (now known as

Belarus), Russia in 1896

He studied medicine and later law in Moscow Majored in Philosophy and History in an Worked as a schoolteacher and afterwards Vygotsky died at the age of 38 from


independent university

became a psychologist for ten years.


Definition Sociocultural theory results from the dynamic interaction between a person and the surrounding social and cultural forces. 3 claims of Vygotsky a) Fundamentally shaped by cultural tools b) Functioning emerges out of social processes c) Developmental methods (Zone of Proximal Development)

Strategies to utilize the benefits of ZPD

a) Scaffolding –requires demonstration, while controlling the environment so that one can take things step by step. b) Reciprocal teaching – open dialog between student and teacher which goes beyond simple question and answer session.

Vygotsky theorized that human development is not something that is fixed and eternal. It will change as a result of historical development. Cultural Influences a) Imitative learning b) Instructed learning c) Collaborative learning Principles a) Cognitive development is limited to a certain range at any given age. b) Full cognitive development requires social interaction.

5 Main Points a) Use of Zone of Proximal Development b) Interaction wth other people is important for cognitive growth c) Culture can make daily living more efficient and effective. d) Advanced mental methods start through social activities. e) Increase of the independent use of language and thought during a child’s first few years of life.

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