Cognitive and social development affect learning in many ways. Cognitive development involves the mental processes that are involved in taking in, organizing and using information or knowledge to think and reason. These cognitive processes are influenced by a person’s experiences, physical environment, language skills, memory capacity, attention span and other capacities such as creativity. Social development refers to the process of developing social relationships with others through communication and interaction. Social interactions have an immense impact on how a person learns.
In what ways do cognitive and social development affect learning?
One way that cognitive development affects learning is through working memory, which is the ability to store short-term memories while performing tasks (Holland & Crone-Todd, 2020). Working memory has been found to be crucial for problem solving tasks because it enables us to link our thoughts together more effectively (Ilin & Teresi, 2017). For example, if a student needs to solve a math equation involving multiple steps then they must remember each previous step in order for them to successfully complete the equation. Similarly, good working memory helps students retain what they learn better over time because it allows them to form connections between new information and prior knowledge (Klingberg et al., 2005).
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