Psychosocial and Cognitive Development of Undergraduate University Students in Cyprus: The Role of Social Relations



Series: Psychology Research Progress, Perspectives on Cognitive Psychology
BISAC: PSY008000

This book explores the psycho-social and cognitive development of Greek Cypriot University students. Taking Perry’s theory of ethical and intellectual development as a point of reference, it first explores the way Perry was influenced by both Piaget and Kohlberg in relation to the formulation of stage theory, and then discusses the way Perry’s work influenced more recent Post-formal theories of cognitive development. It is argued that all stage theories depended on a particular structuralist reading of Piagetian theory that suppressed the references to the social psychological work of Piaget, and in particular the role of social interaction in cognitive development. This critique is articulated in two moves. First, the authors describe how critical voices internal to this literature like Riegel’s attempted to depart from what they conceived as an individualistic paradigm through the introduction of a dialectical framework, but then also point to the problems of these initial efforts. A major problem of these first efforts was the absence of a well developed socio-cultural framework for analysis based on Vygotskian theory. This problem is redressed through a discussion of the ways that major socio-cultural theorists understood human development in their more recent theories. The authors also revisit the social concept in Piagetian theory and its development through successive generations of research on social interaction and cognitive development. An integrative framework of human development as a social psychological process is then proposed that welds together a role for social relations on crucial cognitive outcomes like the attainment of formal operational thinking and deep learning. Additionally, psycho-social developmental outcomes like tolerance, commitment to future plans and self-determination are discussed as well.

The results, beyond providing a description of university students’ state of development for the first time in the Cypriot context, also discuss the role of gender and socio-economic status in these students. Finally, the book is characterised by the attempt at the articulation of what Doise [1986] described as the four levels of analysis [intra-personal, interpersonal, intergroup/positional, social representations/ideological] by integrating in this process of articulation a role for social ethnic identity and ideological variables, thus offering a more complete socio-cultural model of university students’ development that manages to integrate social identity dynamics into existing development theories.
(Imprint: Nova)

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

List of Tables

List of Figures


About the Authors

Chapter 1. Perry’s Model of Ethical and Intellectual Development in the College Years and Beyond

Chapter 2. From Dialectics to Socio-cultural Theories of Human Development

Chapter 3. Rediscovering the Social in Piaget: Towards a Triadic Theory of Student Development

Chapter 4. The Social-Psychological Subject and Intergroup Relations in the Cyprus Context

Chapter 5. Methods

Chapter 6. The Results

Chapter 7. Discussion




This book is primarily aimed at graduate students, academics, and student development researchers.
It will be of interest to Sociology, Developmental Psychology, Education, Educational Psychology, Social psychology students and academics. It is aimed primarily at postgraduate students, yet it can be used in advanced undergraduate courses.
We believe that the undergraduate courses that the book would be used on contain: Introduction to Developmental Psychology, Advanced Developmental Psychology, Adolescent Psychology, Introduction to Social Psychology, Human learning and Cognition, Advanced Social Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, Educational Psychology, Child Development and Educational applications, Social Psychology: Intergroup relations and social representations, Social Psychology of Cognitive Development, Adolescent psychology, Human Growth and Development,
The graduate courses that this book would be used on are the same as above in their advanced level and furthermore graduate courses that it would be used on include: Psychology of Education, Social Development and Social Settings, Educational Psychology, Cognition, Social Cognition, Advanced Adolescent Psychology, Psychological Foundations of Learning, Theories of Learning,
The book can be used as part of the teaching material and may be sold to university libraries.

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