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Gabriella Zentai: The Development of Systematizing Ability Among 4- to 8-year-olds

This study provides an overview of a newly developed test of systematizing ability and the first results from instrument piloting. As regards the theoretical foundations of the study, the role of critical skills and abilities in the development of personality and their potential development are briefly outlined. The structure of basic systematizing ability is discussed. The test developed as part of the study is described. It conforms to the system of DIFER tests in both form and concept, and it is appropriate for measuring the development of four systematization skills: recognition, selection, sorting and sequencing. Two versions were developed, both containing 50 items. The reliability figures were strong (version A: .89; version B: .87). The pilot sample consisted of 380 participants. Cross-sectional data collection was carried out in four consecutive age groups: pre-kindergarten, kindergarten and the first two years of elementary school. The results thus offer an opportunity to map the developmental process of systematizing ability between the ages of 4 and 8. The mean performance was 81 pp in the youngest sub-sample, rising to 92 pp in the oldest. Achievement intervals were determined in relation to developmental levels (preparatory, beginner, intermediate, advanced and optimal), and frequency distributions were calculated for each. 29% of the children reached the level of optimal acquisition even in the youngest age group, which ratio increased to 48%, 57% and 78% in the older groups, respectively. The analyses demonstrate the practical applications of the test battery as well.

MAGYAR PEDAGÓGIA 110. Number 1. 5-31. (2010)

Levelezési cím / Address for correspondence: Zentai Gabriella, Békés Megyei Tudásház és Könyvtár, H–5600 Békéscsaba, Béri Balogh Á. u. 19/3.


Magyar Tudományos Akadémia