The concept of egocentrism in the context of Piaget’s theory

Publication year: 2011
Source: New Ideas in Psychology, Volume 29, Issue 3, December 2011, Pages 327-345

Thomas, Kesselring , Ulrich, Müller

In this paper, we trace the origin and development of the concept of egocentrism in Piaget’s work. We evaluate a number of criticisms that have been leveled against the concept of egocentrism. Based on our evaluation, we propose a reconceptualization of the concept of egocentrism as a decentering process with different phases that is recapitulated at different stages of development. We provide examples of the decentering process for the sensorimotor, preoperational, concrete-operational, and formal operational stages.Piaget introduced the concept of egocentrism in his early writings in the 1920s to describe general characteristics of the preschool child. Since its introduction, the…