Jean Piaget: Swiss Psychologist and Cognitive Development

Many of us have heard the name “Jean Piaget.” Jean was a Swiss psychologist who is always remembered for his great contribution to child development.

Piaget is the human who worked hard towards education in the child’s mindset. He explained the real importance of education in a child’s life.

Jean is most well known for his cognitive development theory that peers at kids to improve intellectually via childhood.  

Here are some interesting facts about Jean Piaget.

Quick Facts of Jean Piaget

Full Name

Jean William Fritz Piaget

Nick Name

Tar-dieu (Slow God or Late God)


August 9, 1896

Age of Death

84 years old (1896 – 1980)


Neuchatel, Switzerland






University of Neuchatel

University of Zurich






Clinical Psychologist


Children’s Cognitive Development

Marital Status



Valentine Chatenay (1923 – 1980)


Laurent Piaget

Jacqueline Piaget

Lucienne Piaget

Net Worth

$1.2 Million

Social Media Presence


Early Life and Family

Jean Piaget was born on August 9, 1896 in Neuchatel, Switzerland. His father, Arthur Piaget, was an educator of middle-age literature and a keen interest in local records and history.

Rebecca Jackson, Jean’s mother, was smart, powerful. However, Piaget usually got her a little neurotic, which defines an image that Jean told proved towards his interest in psychology, hence far from Pathology.

Jean Piaget Swiss Psychologist
Jean Piaget Swiss Psychologist

Piaget was an older kid of his parents. Jean was additionally independent, and he had a good sort of keen interest in nature.

He always loved collecting shells. Around the age of 10, Jean published his first and foremost ‘Paper.’ Now, you might have a question: what paper?

Jean Piaget published a single-page account of his looking for a sparrow. In Piaget’s early childhood, Jean Piaget always showed interest in biology and the natural globe. His zoology interest added up respect in the sector after Jean published different snail articles at the age of 15.

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While Jean was 15 years old, the woman who was his nanny wrote a letter to Piaget’s family. There the nanny wrote that she apologized for faking up the story that the kidnappers tried to harm Jean when he was a baby. 

However, Jean always thought about this story made by the nanny. Piaget knew it was fake; however, he started imagining the story.

In 1923, Piaget got eloped to Valentine Chatenay. The couple had three childrens. 

Education of Piaget

Jean Piaget initiated his education at the University of Neuchatel, where Piaget studied at the University of Zurich

Meanwhile, Jean Piaget was studying, and he also published two papers that are known as philosophical papers. After his graduation was over, Jean shifted to Paris from Switzerland.

After his shifting to Paris, Jean began tutoring at the Grange-Aux-Belles Street School. This school was only for boys. Alfred Binet was the person who looked and ran the school.

Piaget helped Binet, marking Ninet’s intelligence test. While this procedure was taking place, Piaget noticed that few young scholars usually gave wrong answers.

In the beginning, Jean didn’t take it seriously; however, Piaget later initiated noticing it after Jean started thinking about it. After this, Piaget concluded with a theory that young children’s physiology is much different from older people. 

Jean Piaget Educating Children
Jean Piaget Educating Children

At this instance, Jean Piaget started to develop a world theory of Psychological development steps in which humans reveal the same shape of psychology in every stage of improvement.

Around the year 1921, Jean Piaget went back to Switzerland, his birthplace. He returned as the director of none other than Rousseau Institute, which was in Geneva.

Edward Claparede ran the institute. Jean had an idea of Claparede’s thoughts and plans that had the physiological concept’ fumble’ that were near mixed with ‘test and errors’ seen in human’s brain form.

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From 1925 to 1929, Jean labored as a Physiological tutor, adding science philosophy at the University of Neuchatel.

In 1929, Piaget got the Director of the International Bureau of Education position and still became its head until 1968.

Jean was also mentioned in the second rand as the most influential psychologist during the 20th century in his 2002 study research.

Jean Piaget’s highlighted four stages of Cognitive Development

  1. The first stage is called the sensorimotor stage: in this stage, the newborn child commonly recognize the world according to their sense and motor movements
  2. The second stage is called the concrete operational stage: in this stage is the improvement of speaking power and the beginning of the symbolic play
  3. The third stage is called the concrete operational stage: in this stage, small children find it hard and struggle with the thinking capacity of theoretical 
  4. The fourth stage is called the formal operational stage: in this stage, childhood enters into adulthood, which is above 12 years old here, the children adopt a non-touchable thought and reduce reason.

Important research of Jean Piaget

  • Jean developed a conclusion that small kids usually have different thinking criteria
  • Piaget also researched that individuals build their point of thinking and knowledge of the globe according to the communication among the individual’s ideas and experience.

Career History

Jean Piaget has given us four phases in theoretical research vellication;

  • The model of sociological for development 
  • The intellectual model of biological for development
  • The explanation of the model of logic for the development of intellectual
  • The figurative thought study

What was Jean Piaget before he became a psychologist?

Before Jean Piaget was a psychologist, he was training in natural history, including philosophy. He also got a doctorate in the year 1918. Piaget got it from the University of Neuchatel.

Psychologist Jean Piaget
Psychologist Jean Piaget

After the completion, Piaget again took the post-doctorate training in Zurich from 1918 to 1919 in Paris from 1919 to 1921.

Sociological model of development

Jean was firstly known as a psychologist in the 1920s. Piaget researched the unseen phrase of kids’ mental state.

Jean then suggested that children shift from a stage of egocentrism to sociocentrism. To brief this, Piaget elaborated and added the advantages of physiological and clinical procedures to make what he named a semi-clinical discussion.

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Jean initiated the discussion by questioning the kids’ systematized queries and turning on how the children replied. Piaget later queried a list of nonstandard questions.

Jean Piaget later realized that there was moderate development from beginning to systematic science and social communication and the dare to small childrens thinking through the much more modern children.


Jean Piaget developed and called himself a “genetic” epistemologist, which means a keen interest in the step of the good improvement of studies.

The net worth of Jean Piaget

The net worth of Jean Piaget was $1.2 million.


During the year 1921, Piaget became the research director at the Institute of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Geneva. Jean was also a Professor of Psychology, Sociology, and the Philosophy of Science the year 1925 to 1929 at the University of Neuchatel.

Piaget receiving Award
Piaget receiving Award

From 1929 to 1939, Piaget was offered with the professor extraordinaire of the History of Scientific Thought at the University of Geneva.

Meanwhile, from 1929 to 1967, Piaget became the director of the International Bureau of Education.

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Death of Jean Piaget

Jean left the world in 1980. It was the 16th of September. He died in his birthplace Geneva, Switzerland. The reason behind his death is yet unknown. He was hence 84 years old during his death.

Jean Piaget Quotes

  • The goal of education is not to increase the amount of knowledge but to create the possibilities for a child to invent and discover, to create men who are capable of doing new things.
  • The principle goal of education in the schools should be creating men and women who are capable of doing new things, not simply repeating what other generations have done.
  • Intelligence is what you use when you don’t know what to do: when neither innateness nor learning has prepared you for the particular situation.
  • It is with children that we have the best chance of studying the development of logical knowledge, mathematical knowledge, physical knowledge, and so forth.
  • Childish egocentrism is, in its essence, an inability to differentiate between the ego and the social environment.
  • The current state of knowledge is a moment in history, changing just as rapidly as the state of knowledge in the past has ever changed and, in many instances, more rapidly.
  • The self thus becomes aware of itself, at least in its practical action, and discovers itself as a cause among other causes and as an object subject to the same laws as other objects.


  1. Who was Jean Piaget?

Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget was the first to make a systematic study of the acquisition of understanding in children.

  1. What is Piaget’s theory?

Jean Piaget’s theory of cognitive development suggests that children move through four different stages of mental development. His theory focuses not only on understanding how children acquire knowledge but also on understanding the nature of intelligence.

  1. What did Jean Piaget believe?

Essentially, Piaget believed that humans create their own understanding of the world. In theological terms, he was a psychological constructivist, believing that learning is caused by the blend of two processes: assimilation and accommodation.

  1. What are the 3 Main cognitive theories?

The three main cognitive theories are Piaget’s cognitive developmental theory, Vygotsky’s sociocultural theory, and information-processing theory.

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