Maturation and environmentalism

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Maturation is the guiding notion in educational theory that developing children will develop their cognitive skills on their own with no influence from their environment.

Names associated with Maturation Theory are Gessell, Hunt and Reisner.


Environmentalism is the opposite view - that children acquire all their cognitive skills from their surroundings.

Names associated with Environmental Theory are Bandura, Watson and Skinner.


Vygotsky's ideas allow compromise between maturation and environmentalism. This is referred to as constructivism. Others that contribute to this theory are Montessori, Piaget and Dewey.