The aim of this study is to analyse the cognitive processes functioning and development. Nevertheless, another particular goal is to analyse logical thinking functioning and development. Within this research they are analysed as the open nonequilibrium self-developing systems whose behaviour is determined by the complex inter-relationships between external and internal determinants.
Three groups of factors, which should be included in any postnonclassical determination model, are represented by three groups of research objectives: 1) studying intrinsic laws of cognitive mental processes (and structure) functioning and developing as an integrated system; describing its equilibrium (relatively stable) and nonequilibrium conditions; 2) studying the interrelationship of the external and internal determinants, dynamic and statistic types of causal relationships in the cognitive operation and development processes in equilibrium and nonequilibrium phases; 3) studying the influence of the external determinants and describing the cognitive system change mechanisms during its transfer process to a new level of development.
This approach clarifies and complicates the conventional perspective of the relationship between learning and development, whereas the mental processes development is deemed as exclusively determined either from outside (training) or from inside (development). Within this approach it is possible to describe in detail the working mechanisms of the so-called «zone of proximal development».
As a result of theoretical analysis, all three research tasks groups are specified using logical thinking development context. A hypothesis states that the content of objects and knowledge about objects, which are determined by the cultural and social environment and which are imparted in the training process, may be the external cause of forming and developing thinking of a human individual (its composition and structure). Moreover, the content of objects and knowledge about objects may launch self-organization process of the logical thinking system elements in accordance with its potential for self-development.
Design of experimental verification of the proposed determination model efficacy is described in details and theoretically justified using the development material of the preschoolers logical thinking.
The aim of this research is to develop a postnonclassical cognitive processes content determination model in which mental processes are considered as open selfdeveloping, self-organizing systems. Three types of systems (dynamic, statistical, developing) were analysed and compared on the basis of the description of the external and internal characteristics of causation, types of causal chains (dependent, independent) and their interactions, as well as the nature of the relationship between the elements of the system (hard, probabilistic, mixed). Mechanisms of open non-equilibrium nonlinear systems (dissipative) and four dissipative structures emergence conditions are described. Determination models of mental and behaviour formation and development that were developed under various theoretical approaches (associationism, behaviorism, gestaltism, psychology of intelligence by Piaget, Vygotsky culture historical approach, activity approach and others) are mapped on each other as the models that describe behaviour of the three system types mentioned above.
The development models of the mental sphere are shown to be different by the following criteria: 1) allocated determinants amount; 2) presence or absence of the system own activity that results in selecting the model not only external, but also internal determinants; 3) types of causal chains (dependent-independent-blended); 4) types of relationships between the causal chain that ultimately determines the subsequent system determination type as decisive (a tough dynamic pattern) or stochastic (statistical regularity). The continuity of postnonclassical, classical and non-classical models of mental development determination are described. The process of gradual refinement, complexity, «absorption» of the mental determination by the latter models is characterized. The human mental can be deemed as the functioning of the open developing non-equilibrium nonlinear system (dissipative). The mental sphere is described as a self-organizing system with six common features of self-organizing systems. Three general and three local demands for the development of postnonclassical determination development model of cognitive structures were defined. It is concluded that postnonclassical cognitive structures formation and development model and its application to a specific substantive material should contain a description of the three groups of factors: 1) self-development trends in the cognitive structure as an integrated system; 2) configuration and methods of effects on the cognitive structure functioning and development from the outside (external determination); 3) mechanisms of the external factors influence on the development of cognitive structures. By studying and describing these factors, it will be possible to transfer the link between learning and development from the stage of theoretical analysis to the level of applied technology. This technology allows to influence on the cognitive systems development and also increase its efficacy by external determinants influence (generative cause) on the cognitive structures self-organization mechanisms (internal determinants) according to the potentialities of its self-development.
The aim of this research is to establish relationships between the levels of operational system elements (classification, seriation, understanding of the conservation principle and the ability to decenter) on the concrete operational thinking fledging period in preschool children from two different countries: Russia and China. Classic techniques of Piaget were used to diagnose development levels of subject’s operational system structural elements. Development stages of classification and seriation of logical operations, understanding the conservation principle, the ability to decenter were compared in the 40 Russian and 40 China preschool children (3.1-6.5 years). No statistically significant differences in terms of development of all the examined elements were revealed in children from Russia and China (Mann-Whitney U test). Statistically significant positive correlation relationship is found between the levels operational system elements in the Russian and Chinese samples (ρ Spearman; p < 0.01). It is concluded that the subjects of the Russian Federation and China do not surpass each other in terms of developing the classification, seriation, understanding the conservation principle and the ability to decenter. The subject’s operational system elements function and develop interdependently in Russian and China preschoolers, so if one level of the system elements rises it is accompanied by increasing of other elements. Summing up, the subjects of the Russian Federation and those of China do not surpass each other in terms of developing the classification, seriation, understanding the conservation principle and the ability to decenter. There are no statistically significant differences in configurations of operational system elements under the transfer from the pre-operational stage of thinking development to concrete operational one between the preschool children of different cultural-social conditions (Russia, China). This emphasizes the fact that the spontaneous processes of shaping and development of logical thinking operational system is universal. Besides, the system of logical operations functions under the inherent laws of system development when transferring from pre- operational development stage to the concrete-operational.