Intelligence and Cognitive Abilities as Competencies in Development

Damian P. Birney and Robert J. Sternberg

in Lifespan Cognition

Published in print April 2006 | ISBN: 9780195169539
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199847204 | DOI:
Intelligence and Cognitive Abilities as Competencies in Development

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This chapter discusses four theoretical approaches—psychometric theories, information-processing theories, Piagetian and neo-Piagetian theories, and contextualist theories—and the associated methodologies that are used to understand intelligence and intellectual development. It then reflects on a relatively new theory that, following from the triarchic theory of intelligence, conceptualizes abilities as competencies in development. This multifaceted account of intelligence has been proposed to integrate what are often considered to be disparate paradigms. The triarchic theory of intelligence comprises three subtheories: a componential subtheory dealing with the (universal) components of intelligence; a contextual subtheory dealing with processes of adaptation, shaping, and selection; and an experiential subtheory dealing with the importance of coping with novelty and automatization. This chapter also examines experience and cognitive capacity as determinants of intellectual development.

Keywords: psychometric theories; information-processing theories; Piagetian theories; neo-Piagetian theories; contextualist theories; intelligence; intellectual development; triarchic theory of intelligence; cognitive capacity; experience; novelty

Chapter.  10606 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Cognitive Psychology

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