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Lifespan CognitionMechanisms of Change$
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Ellen Bialystok and Fergus I. M. Craik

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195169539

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195169539.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 19 October 2021

Inter- and Intra-individual Differences in Problem Solving Across the Lifespan

Inter- and Intra-individual Differences in Problem Solving Across the Lifespan

(p.285) 20 Inter- and Intra-individual Differences in Problem Solving Across the Lifespan
Lifespan Cognition

Robert S. Siegler

Oxford University Press

Among the most striking characteristics of human cognition is its variability, which is present both between people (inter-individual variability) and within a given person (intra-individual variability). Although inter-individual variability has received far more attention, identifying the sources and functions of intra-individual variability may prove to be at least as important for understanding development. This chapter examines two main hypotheses. The first is that substantial variability in higher level cognition is present throughout the lifespan. The second is that people of all ages generally choose adaptively among alternative approaches, subject to constraints of capacity, knowledge, and task conditions. To explore these hypotheses, this chapter considers research findings on strategy use and strategy choice in infancy, childhood, and younger and older adulthood.

Keywords:   cognition, inter-individual variability, intra-individual variability, lifespan, capacity, knowledge, infancy, childhood, adulthood

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