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Information Processing Theory

Information Processing Theory 2006 Information processing theory represents is an empirically tested approach to the study of cognition and cognitive development , according to which human mind and processes occurring in it are likened to certain algorithms . However , unlike typical algorithms , where the main emphasis made upon input and output , scientists developing information processing theory make focus on the processes of cognitive development . Although information processing theory was initially developed by Atkinson and Shriffin in 1968 , subsequent generations of psychologists and researchers revised and modernized it , adding new approaches and alternatives (Huitt , 2003 . From the contemporary perspective ,information processing theory represents one of the most intrinsic and important parts of cognitive psychology .The empirical bedrock on which information processing theory rests comes largely from years of research on how animals and humans of different ages behave when confronted with simple problems that require choosing between two visual displays . One display is correct and the other incorrect the problem calls on the solver to discover which is which .The information in these displays , as in real-life , contains both relevant and irrelevant elements . The problems can be solved whether the information is processed actively or passively . Active information processing abstracts and selectively encodes the relevant information and ignores that which is , or appears to be , irrelevant to the solution of the problem (Cowan , 1995 . Passive information processing nonselectively encodes all of the perceptible information , relevant and irrelevant alike , in parallel (Cowan , 1995 . In a complementary manner ,the problems permit solutions by means of automatic associative learning or by means of rational hypothesis testing . When these problems were presented to animals they mostly tended to process the information in the displays nonselectively and to solve the problems in the automatic associative mode . When human adults were presented with the problems they typically abstracted the relevant information and solved the problems in the rational hypothesis-testing mode . How human children encoded the information and solved the problems depended on their age .The youngest children , like the infrahuman animals , mostly tended to encode the information nonselectively and to solve the problems in the associative mode (Cowan , 1995 . But between early childhood and young adulthood there was a gradual , systematic , quantitative increase in both the tendency to abstract the relevant from the irrelevant information and in the tendency to solve the problem by testing plausible hypotheses .Information processing theorists associate human cognitive processes with certain algorithms . In the middle of the past century the most prominent of the neobehaviorists , Hull produced a mathematical theory of learning intended to explain a variety of simple learning behaviors based on a series of explicit postulates from which testable deductions were derived (Kendler , 1995 . His theory began with noting that organic evolution provides the normal organism with receptor organs capable of responding to the important stimuli in its environment (S , motoric organs that can make the necessary responses (R , and a nervous system that connects these stimuli and responses (- (Kendler , 1995 , p . 73 .Information processing theorists went further by breaking down…

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