Cognitive Development and Cognitive Neuroscience: The Learning Brain, 2nd Edition (Paperback) book cover

Cognitive Development and Cognitive Neuroscience

The Learning Brain, 2nd Edition

By Usha Goswami


600 pages | 37 Color Illus.

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Paperback: 9781138923911
pub: 2019-10-18
Available for pre-order
Hardback: 9781138923904
pub: 2019-10-18
Available for pre-order

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Cognitive Development and Cognitive Neuroscience: The Learning Brain is a thoroughly revised edition of the bestselling Cognitive Development. The new edition of this full-colour textbook has been updated with the latest research in cognitive neuroscience, going beyond Piaget and traditional theories to demonstrate how emerging data from the brain sciences require a new theoretical framework for teaching cognitive development, based on learning.

Building on the framework for teaching cognitive development presented in the first edition, Goswami shows how different cognitive domains such as language, causal reasoning and theory of mind may emerge from automatic neural perceptual processes. Cognitive Neuroscience and Cognitive Development integrates principles and data from cognitive science, neuroscience, computer modelling and studies of non-human animals into a model that transforms the study of cognitive development to produce both a key introductory text and a book which encourages the reader to move beyond the superficial and gain a deeper understanding of the subject matter.

Cognitive Development and Cognitive Neuroscience is essential for students of developmental and cognitive psychology, education, language and the learning sciences. It will also be of interest to anyone training to work with children.


Goswami’s stated goal in writing this book is "to provide a selective, but hopefully representative, review of some of the most interesting past and current work in cognitive development and developmental cognitive neuroscience." She attains this goal in impressive fashion. Professors as well as students will learn a lot from reading this book; I know that I did.

Robert S. Siegler, Schiff Foundations Professor of Psychology and Education, Teachers College, Columbia University

In this revision of a now-classic overview of cognitive development, Goswami continues to provide an engaging and synthetic review of the best behavioural research in the area, informed by interchange with cognitive science, neuroscience, computer modelling, and studies of nonhuman animals. Working through the lens of neuroconstructivism, she nevertheless provides a lucid account of other classic and contemporary theories.

Nora S. Newcombe, Laura H. Carnell Professor of Psychology, Temple University, Philadelphia

In this book, Goswami masterfully blends research from traditional approaches to the study of cognitive development with the latest insights into developmental processes emerging from neuroscience and genetics. Spanning the developmental arch from prenatal development through to adolescence, this book provides an engaging overview of the developmental processes associated with attention, learning, memory, language, reasoning and the emergence of concepts. A must read for not only for those interested in cognitive development but also for instructors seeking an up-to-date, interdisciplinary synthesis of cognitive development.

Daniel Ansari, Department of Psychology & Faculty of Education, Western University, Canada

While some texts have an encyclopedic feel in terms of including a one-sentence description of every study in the literature, giving rise to a disjointed reading experience, Goswami’s Cognitive Neuroscience and Cognitive Development has a more natural narrative flow. Coherence is preserved in the movement across topics because the book has an organizing theme in which ideas from cognitive neuroscience are used to connect perception and cognition. The notion that cognitive development may emerge from distributed spatial and temporal patterns of activity in brain response to perceptual experience, activity that is enriched as language is acquired, is especially provocative.

Paul C. Quinn, Francis Alison Professor and Trustees Distinguished Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences, University of Delaware, Newark DE

Table of Contents


1. Infancy: The Physical World 1.

2. Infancy: The Physical World 2.

3. Infancy: The Psychological World.

4. Social Cognition, Mental Representation and

Theory of Mind

5. Conceptual Development and the Biological World 269 - 340.

6. Language Acquisition.

7. Causal Reasoning and the Human Brain

8. The Development of Memory

9. Metacognition, Reasoning and Executive Function

10. Schooling: Reading and Number

11. Theories of Cognitive Development


About the Author

Usha Goswami is one of the leading researchers in childhood and is respected worldwide. She is Professor of Cognitive Developmental Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge, a Fellow of St John’s College, Cambridge, UK, and a Fellow of the British Academy.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Cognitive Psychology
PSYCHOLOGY / Developmental / General