Bandura, Albert (1925-present)

Albert Bandura was born December 4, 1925, in the small town of Mundare in northern Alberta, Canada. He was educated in a small elementary school and high school in one, with minimal resources, yet a remarkable success rate. After high school, he worked for one summer filling holes on the Alaska Highway in the Yukon. He received his bachelors degree in Psychology from the University of British Columbia in 1949. He went on to the University of Iowa, where he received his Ph.D. in 1952. It was there that he came under the influence of the behaviorist tradition and learning theory. While at Iowa, he met Virginia Varns, an instructor in the nursing school. They married and later had two daughters. After graduating, he took a postdoctoral position at the Wichita Guidance Center in Wichita, Kansas. In 1953, he started teaching at Stanford University. While there, he collaborated with his first graduate student, Richard Walters, resulting in their first book, Adolescent Aggression, in 1959. Sadly, Walters died young in a motorcycle accident. Bandura was president of the APA in 1973, and received the APA’s Award for Distinguished Scientific Contributions in 1980. He continues to work at Stanford to this day.

Boeree, G. (1998). Albert Bandura. Retrieved September 9, 2002, from Shippensburg University, Psychology Department Web site:



Pavlov, Ivan (1849-1936)

Ivan Pavlov was born in a small village in central Russia. His family hoped that he would become a priest, and he went to a theological seminary. After reading Charles Darwin, he found that he cared more for scientific pursuits and left the seminary for the University of St. Petersburg. There he studied chemistry and physiology, and he received his doctorate in 1879. He continued his studies and began doing his own research in topics that interested him most: digestion and blood circulation. His work became well known, and he was appointed professor of physiology at the Imperial Medical Academy.

The work that made Pavlov a household name in psychology actually began as a study in digestion. He was looking at the digestive process in dogs, especially the interaction between salivation and the action of the stomach. He realized they were closely linked by reflexes in the autonomic nervous system. Without salivation, the stomach didn't get the message to start digesting. Pavlov wanted to see if external stimuli could affect this process, so he rang a bell at the same time he gave the experimental dogs food. After a while, the dogs -- which before only salivated when they saw and ate their food -- would begin to salivate when the bell rang, even if no food were present. In 1903 Pavlov published his results calling this a "conditioned reflex," different from an innate reflex, such as yanking a hand back from a flame, in that it had to be learned. Pavlov called this learning process (in which the dog's nervous system comes to associate the bell with the food, for example) "conditioning." He also found that the conditioned reflex will be repressed if the stimulus proves "wrong" too often. If the bell rings repeatedly and no food appears, eventually the dog stops salivating at the bell.

Pavlov was much more interested in physiology than psychology. He looked upon the young science of psychiatry a little dubiously. But he did think that conditioned reflexes could explain the behavior of psychotic people. For example, he suggested, those who withdrew from the world may associate all stimulus with possible injury or threat. His ideas played a large role in the behaviorist theory of psychology, introduced by John Watson around 1913.

Pavlov was held in extremely high regard in his country -- both as Russia and the Soviet Union -- and around the world. In 1904, he won the Nobel Prize in physiology/medicine for his research on digestion. He was outspoken and often at odds with the Soviet government later in his life, but his world renown, and work that his nation was proud of, kept him free from persecution. He worked actively in the lab until his death at age 87.

People and discoveries: Ivan Pavlov. (1998). Retrieved September 9, 2002, from PBS, People and Discoveries: a Science Odyssey Web site:



Skinner, Burrhus Frederic (1904-1990)

Psychologist, born in Susquhanna, Pa. He studied at Harvard, teaching there (1931-6, 1947-74). A leading behaviorist, he is a proponent of operant conditioning, and the inventor of the Skinner box for facilitating experimental observations. His main scientific works include The Behavior of Organisms (1938), and Verbal Behavior (1957), but his social and political views have reached a wider public through Walden Two and Beyond Freedom and Dignity (1971).

Skinner, Burrhus Frederic (1904-90). (n.d.). Retrieved September, 9, 2002, from University of Wuerzburg, Biozentrum Department of Genetics and Neurobiology Web site:



Thorndike, Edward Lee (1874-1949)

Psychologist, born in Williamsburg, MA. He studied at Wesleyan University and Harvard, and became professor at Teachers College, Columbia (1904-40), where he worked on educational psychology and the psychology of animal learning. As a result of studying animal intelligence, he formulated his famous "law of effect", which states that a given behavior is learned by trial-and-error, and is more likely to occur if its consequences are satisfying. His works include Psychology of Learning (1914) and The Measurement of Intelligence (1926).

Skinner, Burrhus Frederic (1904-90). (n.d.). Retrieved September, 9, 2002, from University of Wuerzburg, Biozentrum Department of Genetics and Neurobiology Web site:



Anderson, John (1947-present)

Born in Vancouver, British Columbia, John Anderson attended the University of British Columbia and left with "the dream of practicing psychology as a precise and quantitative science" (American Psychological Association, 1995). After graduating at the head of his class in 1968, Anderson went to Stanford to work with Gordon Bower. It was here that he discovered his lifelong dream of developing "a theory of human cognition sufficiently well specified that it could be simulated on a computer."

In his 1976 book, Language, Memory, and Thought, Anderson first described the ACT Theory, which "was intended to be a complete theory of higher-level human cognition" (American Psychological Association, 1995). Anderson moved to Carnegie Mellon University in 1978 and has been there ever since. In 1983, The Art of Cognition was published, which described a more mature ACT Theory. He referred to it as ACT* to indicate the ACT Theory had been taken as far is it could go. ACT* deals with declarative, procedural and working memory structures (Kearsly, n.d.). Anderson would spend the remainder of his career trying to break the theory and build a better one. Rules of the Mind was published in 1993, which described the ACT-R Theory, which incorporated lessons of his tutoring work in a new theory of procedural learning (American Psychological Association, 1995).

American Psychological Association (1995). John R. Anderson - Biography. From the American Psychologist (April 1995) article that accompanies John Anderson's 1994 American Psychological Association (APA) Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award, presented at the APA Convention in New York City, August 1995. Retrieved August 20, 2002, from

Kearsley, G. (n.d.). Component display theory (M.D. Merrill). Retrieved September 7, 2002, from Explorations in Learning & Instruction: The Theory Into Practice Database Web site:



Ausubel, David

David Ausubel was most influenced in his work by Piaget's cognitive development theory. He was active in his field between the 1950s and 1970s, during which time he developed his instructional models based on cognitive structures. Ausubel's theory focused on how individuals learn large amounts of "meaningful" material from verbal/textual lessons. Ausubel's Subsumption Theory concludes that what a learner already knows has the most influence on learning. One of Ausubel's most important instructional strategies proposed by Ausubel was the use of advance organizers.

Bowen, Barbara. (n.d.). Educational Psychology: David Ausubel. Retrieved August 20, 2002, from California State University, Chico, EDTE 246 A: Educational Psychology Web site:


Gagné, Robert (1916-present)

Robert Gagné was born in 1916 in North Andover, MA. He obtained his A.B. at Yale in 1937 and in 1940 his Ph.D. in Psychology from Brown University. He taught at Connecticut College for Women from 1940-49 and then at Penn State University from 1945-1946. Between 1949-1958, Gagné was director of the perceptual and motor skills laboratory of the U.S. Air force. It was at this time that he began to develop some of his ideas that comprise his learning theory called the "Conditions of Learning". He is currently a professor in the Department of Education Research at Florida State University in Tallahassee. For the past 25 years, he has worked to interpret and apply the findings from learning theory/research, primarily to school learning. Today Gagné is considered an experimental psychologist who is concerned with learning and instruction. Although his earlier work is grounded in the behaviorist tradition, his current work seems to be influenced by the information processing view of learning and memory.

Page, N. (2001). Robert Gagne. Retrieved September 9, 2002, from Masschusetts School of Professional Psychology, The Psi Cafe: A Psychology Resource Site:



Gardner, Howard (1949-present)

Howard Gardner is the John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Professor in Cognition and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He also holds positions as Adjunct Professor of Psychology at Harvard University, Adjunct Professor of Neurology at the Boston University School of Medicine, and Chairman of the Steering Committee of Harvard Project Zero. Among numerous honors, Gardner received a MacArthur Prize Fellowship in 1981. He has been awarded eighteen honorary degrees—including degrees from Princeton University, McGill University and Tel Aviv University on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the state of Israel. In 1990, he was the first American to receive the University of Louisville's Grawemeyer Award in education. In 2000 he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship.

The author of eighteen books and several hundred articles, Gardner is best known in educational circles for his theory of multiple intelligences, a critique of the notion that there exists but a single human intelligence that can be assessed by standard psychometric instruments. During the past fifteen years, he and colleagues at Project Zero have been working on the design of performance-based assessments, education for understanding, and the use of multiple intelligences to achieve more personalized curriculum, instruction, and assessment. Most recently, Gardner and his colleagues have launched the Good Work Project. "Good Work" is work that is both excellent in quality and also exhibits a sense of responsibility with respect to implications and applications. Researchers are examining how individuals who wish to carry out good work succeed in doing so during a time when conditions are changing very quickly, market forces are very powerful, and our sense of time and space is being radically altered by technologies, such as the web. Gardner and colleagues have also begun a study of interdisciplinary institutions and curricula. Gardner is the author of eighteen books which have been translated into twenty-one languages. His two most recent books are The Disciplined Mind: Beyond Facts And Standardized Tests, The K-12 Education That Every Child Deserves (Penguin Putnam, 2000) and Intelligence Reframed (Basic Books, 2000). In early fall 2001, Good Work: When Excellence and Ethics Meet will be published by Basic Books.

Gardner, H. (2002). Howard Gardner. Retrieved September 9, 2002, from Harvard Graduate School of Education, Project Zero Web site:



Merrill, M.D.

Dr. M. David Merrill is a Professor in the Department of Instructional Technology at Utah State University and Research Director to the ID2 Research Group. Major contributions in the field of Instructional Technology include the TICCIT CAI authoring system, the Components Display Theory for instructional strategies, Elaboration Theory (with Charles Reigeluth) for content sequence, and ID Expert, an instructional design expert system.

He has published 9 books, 12 chapters of edited books, over 40 articles, and 21 computer-based instructional products. As an entrepreneur, he helped found and served as executive officer in two ID Companies: Courseware, Inc. and Micro Teacher, Inc. Dr. Merrill received his MA and Ph.D. in 1964 from the University of Illinois, Faculty appointments since that time have included George Peabody College for Teachers, Brigham Young University, Stanford University, University of Southern California, and Utah State University.

Abstract Invited ITS'96. (n.d.). Retrieved September 9, 2002, from Université de Montréal, The Department of Computer Science and Operations Research Web site:



Rumelhart, D. and Norman, D.

D. Rumelhart & D. Norman (1978) proposed that there are three modes of learning: accretion, structuring and tuning. Accretion is the addition of new knowledge to existing memory. Structuring involves the formation of new conceptual structures or schema. Tuning is the adjustment of knowledge to a specific task usually through practice. Accretion is the most common form of learning; structuring occurs much less frequently and requires considerable effort; tuning is the slowest form of learning and accounts for expert performance. Restructuring involves some form of reflection or insight (i.e., metacognition) and may correspond to a plateau in performance. On the other hand, tuning often represents automatic behavior that is not available to reflection (e.g., learning procedures). Rumelhart & Norman (1981) extended their model to include analogical processes: a new schema is created by modeling it on an existing schema and then modifying it based upon further experiences.

Kearsley, G. (n.d.). Modes of Learning. Retrieved September 7, 2002, from Explorations in Learning & Instruction: The Theory Into Practice Database Web site:

Rumelhart, D. & Norman, D. (1978). Accretion, tuning and restructuring: Three modes of learning. In. J.W. Cotton & R. Klatzky (eds.), Semantic Factors in Cognition. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

Rumelhart, D. & Norman, D. (1981). Analogical processes in learning. In J.R. Anderson (ed.), Cognitive skills and their acquisition. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.


Novak, Joseph D.

After completing his graduate studies at the University of Minnesota in 1958 Joseph Novak taught biology at Kansas State at Emporia and Purdue University. From 1967-1995 he was a Professor of Education and Biological Sciences at Cornell University, where he still holds the title of Professor Emeritus. His research at Cornell concentrated on human learning, educational studies and knowledge creation. He is perhaps most famous for developing the cognitivist instructional strategy of concept mapping. Currently he is researching students' ideas on learning and epistemology and methods of applying educational ideas and tools, including concept mapping, in corporate settings and distance learning programs. Visit John Novak's Cornell University homepage at

Joseph D. Novak. (n.d.). Retrieved August 20, 2002, from The University of West Florida, Institute for Human and Machine Cognition Web site:



Reigeluth, Charles M.

Dr. Charles M. Reigeluth has a B.A. in Economics from Harvard University and a Ph.D. in Instructional Psychology from Brigham Young University. He taught science at the secondary level for three years and spent ten years on the faculty of the Instructional Design program at Syracuse University, ending as chair of the program. He has been a Professor in the Instructional Systems Technology Department at Indiana University since 1988, and served as chairman of the department from 1990-1992. He has also served as an educational restructuring consultant for state and local education agencies, and as an instructional design consultant for corporate, health, public, and higher education institutions.

Dr. Reigeluth's interests include redesigning educational systems and designing high quality learning resources. He has published eight books and over eighty articles and chapters on those subjects, and has produced several educational software programs. He has developed a vision of a new educational system to better meet the needs of learners in the information society of the 21st century, and he has developed and refined guidelines for the change process to help educational stakeholders to bring about the changes most appropriate for their community. He is also the major developer of several instructional design theories, including the elaboration theory and simulation theory. Two of his books received an "outstanding book of the year" award from the Association for Educational Communications and Technology.

Dr. Reigeluth co-founded the Division for Systemic Change in Education in AECT (the Association for Educational Communications and Technology). He founded the School Restructuring Consortium and the Restructuring Support Service at Indiana University. And he cofounded the Indiana Educational Progress Alliance to foster community-based, district-wide systemic change in Indiana school systems.




Bransford, John and the CTGV

Anchored instruction is a major paradigm for technology-based learning that has been developed by the Cognition & Technology Group at Vanderbilt (CTGV) under the leadership of John Bransford. While many people have contributed to the theory and research o f anchored instruction, Bransford is the principal spokesperson and hence the theory is attributed to him.

The initial focus of the work was on the development of interactive videodisc tools that encouraged students and teachers to pose and solve complex, realistic problems. The video materials serve as "anchors" (macro-contexts) for all subsequent learning an d instruction. As explained by CTGV (1993, p52): "The design of these anchors was quite different from the design of videos that were typically used in education...our goal was to create interesting, realistic contexts that encouraged the active construct ion of knowledge by l earners. Our anchors were stories rather than lectures and were designed to be explored by students and teachers. " The use of interactive videodisc technology makes it possible for students to easily explore the content.

CTGV (1993). Anchored instruction and situated cognition revisted. Educational Technology, 33 (3), 52- 70.

Kearsley, G. (n.d.). Anchored Instruction (John Bransford & the CTGV). Retrieved September 7, 2002, from Explorations in Learning & Instruction: The Theory Into Practice Database Web site:



Bruner, Jerome

The British director Jonathan Miller once teased Jerome Bruner on the BBC for having rehabilitated what in the dark days of behaviorist psychology was a dirty four-letter word: m-i-n-d. Not far off the mark. In his long career, first as Professor of Psychology at Harvard and then as Watts Professor at Oxford, he has been at the forefront of what became, in the 1960s, the much heralded Cognitive Revolution that today dominates psychology around the world.

In 1991, Bruner came to the NYU Law School as Meyer Visiting Professor to collaborate with Anthony Amsterdam, Peggy Cooper Davis, and David Richards in founding and teaching the Colloquium on the Theory of Legal Practice - an effort to study how law is practiced and how its practice can be understood by using tools developed in anthropology, psychology, linguistics, and literary theory. He has remained as a research professor, spending a major portion of his time as an adjunct professor at the Law School exploring the interaction of cultural and legal practice and co-teaching the "Lawyering Theory Colloquium."

"To my delight," he says, "my colleagues and students at the Law School have proved to be real allies in helping us all understand how the law shapes our thinking, talking, and feeling and, in turn, is shaped by them."

Never content with academic work alone, Bruner helped start the educational reform movement in this country during the early '60s and served on the President's Science Advisory Committee during the Kennedy and Johnson administrations. His book, The Process of Education, published in 1961, was and continues to be one of the movement's major guides. Bruner has since been involved in a variety of educational enterprises, including the founding of Head Start, of which he was a major architect.

Throughout his illustrious career, Bruner has received many awards and honors -- among them the International Balzan Prize, the CIBA Gold Medal for Distinguished Research, as well as the Distinguished Scientific Award of the American Psychological Association.



Dewey, John (1859-1952)

Born and raised in Vermont, John Dewey attended the University of Vermont in Burlington. Dewey graduated in 1879 and went on to teach high school for two years, during which time he decided to pursue a career in philosophy. He then pursued a graduate degree at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, where he studied under George Sylvester Morris, a German-trained Hegelian philosopher, and G. Stanley Hall, one of the most prominent American experimental psychologists at the time (Field, 2001). After obtaining his doctorate in 1884, Dewey went on to hold positions at the University of Michigan, the University of Chicago, and Columbia University.

John Dewey is one of several educators credited with laying the foundation for constructivist thinking. Dewey is best known for establishing many characteristics of today's educational system. He led the progressive movement in American education, of which several of the principles are being reexamined to apply in school restructuring efforts. Dewey promoted the idea that instruction needs to be centered around activities that are meaningful to students' experiences (Roblyer, Edwards & Havriluk, 1996). John Dewey was highly regarded as a philosopher-educator and his research and work is being preserved by organizations such as The Center for Dewey Studies and The John Dewey Society.

Field, Richard. (2001). John Dewey (1859-1952). Retrieved August 8, 2002, from The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy Web site:

Roblyer, M.D., Edwards, J. & Havriluk, M.A. (1996). Learning Theories and Integration Models (Chapter 3). In Roblyer, Edwards, & Havriluk, Integrating educational technology into teaching. Prentice Hall.



Grabinger, Scott

Dr. Scott Grabinger is an Associate Professor in the Information and Learning Technologies Program at the University of Colorado at Denver. He is currently the director of the Faculty Technology Studio and the Technology and Learning Team. His educational background and curriculum vita can be explored at

Grabinger, S. (1998). Scott Grabinger, Ed.D. Retrieved September 9, 2002, from University of Colorado at Denver, Information and Learning Technologies Program Web site:



Lave, Jean and Wenger, Etienne

Jean Lave is a social anthropologist with a strong interest in social theory. Much of her work, both in ethnography and in social theory, concentrates on the re-conceiving of learning, learners, and educational institutions in terms of social practice. She has published three books on the subject: Understanding Practice (co-authored with S. Chaiklin, 1993); Situated Learning: Legitimate Peripheral Participation (with E. Wenger, 1991); and Cognition in Practice (1988). Her Morgan Lectures book, Changing Practice: The Politics of Learning and Everyday Life, is in press. More recently her work has taken a historical turn with her field research in Portugal on how multiple identities (national, class, gender) are constituted in struggles between communities. Jean Lave was the Honorary Simon Visiting Professor in Anthropology at Manchester University in 1995. In 1994 The American Educational Research Association presented her with the Sylvia Scribner Research Award, and she delivered the Lewis Henry Morgan Lectures at the University of Rochester in 1993.

GSE UCB Faculty. (n.d.). Retrieved September 9, 2002, from University of California, Berkley, Graduate School of Education Web site:

Etienne Wenger is a globally recognized thought leader in the field of learning theory and its application to business. He is a pioneer of the "communities of practice" research. After working as a teacher for many years, he got a Ph.D. in artificial intelligence from the University of California at Irvine, and joined the Institute for Research on Learning, where he developed a new learning theory centered on the concept of community of practice. It is commonplace to say that people are the most important resource in organizations. Yet we seldom understand this truism in terms of the communities in which individuals develop the capacity to create and share knowledge. These communities of practice are an organization’s most versatile and dynamic knowledge resource.

Wenger, E. (n.d.). Biography: Etienne Wenger, Ph.D. Retrieved September 9, 2002 from



Papert, Seymour

Dr. Seymour Papert was born and educated in South Africa, where he was an active participant in the antiapartheid movement. He attended Cambridge University from 1954-1958, where he pursued mathematical research. From 1958-1963, Dr. Papert worked with Jean Piaget at the University of Geneva. During this time he was inspired to consider using mathematics to understand how children can learn and think (Seymour Papert, 1996).

It was in the sixties that Dr. Papert first started talking "about children using computers as instruments for learning and enhancing creativity" (Professor Seymour Papert, n.d., para. 1). By this time, Papert was a professor at MIT conducting serious research. Papert thought that given the proper resources and experiences, children of all ages could accelerate their own development and learn concepts with formal operations (Roblyer, Edwards, & Havriluk, 1996). Placing more emphasis on the role of the affective domain than Piaget, Papert felt that education ought to provide "rich, motivational environments to foster cognitive growth, and he felt that computers could make possible such environments" (p. 69). The Logo programming language, which used an on-screen "turtle" to help students move more easily from concrete operations to more abstract ones, was created in his MIT laboratory. With Logo, students were able to work in microworlds, or self-contained environments with orderly actions.

Papert lives in Maine, where he continues to be considered one of the world's premiere experts on using technology to provide new ways to learn.

Seymour Papert. (1996). Retrieved August 22, 2002, from Massachusetts Institute Of Technology, MIT Media Lab Web site:

Professor Seymour Papert. (n.d.). Retrieved August 22, 2002, from

Roblyer, M.D., Edwards, J. & Havriluk, M.A. (1996). Learning Theories and Integration Models (Chapter 3). In Roblyer, Edwards, & Havriluk, Integrating educational technology into teaching. Prentice Hall.



Piaget, Jean (1896-1980)

Jean Piaget was born in Neuchâtel (Switzerland) on August 9, 1896. He died in Geneva on September 16, 1980. He was the oldest child of Arthur Piaget, professor of medieval literature at the University, and of Rebecca Jackson. At age 11, while he was a pupil at Neuchâtel Latin high school, he wrote a short notice on an albino sparrow. This short paper is generally considered as the start of a brilliant scientific career made of over sixty books and several hundred articles.

His researches in developmental psychology and genetic epistemology had one unique goal: how does knowledge grow? His answer is that the growth of knowledge is a progressive construction of logically embedded structures superseding one another by a process of inclusion of lower less powerful logical means into higher and more powerful ones up to adulthood. Therefore, children's logic and modes of thinking are initially entirely different from those of adults.

Piaget's oeuvre is known all over the world and is still an inspiration in fields like psychology, sociology, education, epistemology, economics and law as witnessed in the annual catalogues of the Jean Piaget Archives. He was awarded numerous Prizes and honorary Degrees all over the world.



Spiro and Colleagues

Rand Spiro received a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from Pennsylvania State University in 1975. He is a professor of Educational Psychology, Psychology, the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, and the Center for the Study of Reading, at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. To view his homepage, go to He researches acquisition in complex domains, medical cognition, hypermedia computer technologies for learning, and constructive processes in text comprehension and recall.

In reaction to what was thought of as the failure of many instructional approaches, including some constructivist, Rand Spiro and a group of his colleagues, including Feltovich, Jacobson, Coulson, Anderson, and Jehng developed a new constructivist theory. Spiro et al. believed that most of what students should learn is in "ill-structured domains" (Roblyer, Edwards, & Havriluk, 1996). They wanted students to have a different way of thinking about learning. Thus, their Cognitive Flexibility Theory was born. Sometimes referred to as radical constructivists, Spiro et al. had a theory that called for "even greater departure from directed instruction methods than other constructivists (p. 70).

Roblyer, M.D., Edwards, J. & Havriluk, M.A. (1996). Learning Theories and Integration Models (Chapter 3). In Roblyer, Edwards, & Havriluk, Integrating educational technology into teaching. Prentice Hall.



Vygotsky, Lev S. (1896-1934)

Vygotsky, Lev Semyonovich was one of the significant post-revolutionary Soviet psychologists. He argued for the inclusion within psychology of the study of consciousness, however he rejected introspection as a method. Studied at First State University of Moscow between 1913 and 1917. Vygotsky held positions at Second State University, Moscow, and at the Institute of Psychology, Moscow. Vygotsky was one of the significant post-revolutionary Soviet psychologists. He argued for the inclusion within psychology of the study of consciousness, however he rejected introspection as a method. A study of mind, as opposed to just behavior, was necessary to distinguish human beings from lower animals. Vygotsky developed a test that bears his name, designed to test concept formation by having the subject group blocks according to different properties of blocks. In his best known work, Thought and Language (1962), Vygotsky considered the determining factor of a child’s psychological development to be social development, especially language development. The meanings of words change as a child develops, and this, in turn, causes changes in the child’s mental structure. Vygotsky also conducted psychopathological studies. He was one of the first psychologists to investigate conceptualization in schizophrenia.

Zawidzki, Tadeusz. (n.d.). Vygotsky, Lev Semyonovich. Retrieved September 9, 2002, from Dictionary of Philosophy of Mind Web site: