Development of Adult Thinking: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Cognitive Development and Adult Learning, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Development of Adult Thinking

Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Cognitive Development and Adult Learning, 1st Edition

Edited by Eeva K. Kallio


256 pages

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Paperback: 9781138733596
pub: 2020-04-08
Available for pre-order. Item will ship after 8th April 2020
Hardback: 9781138733503
pub: 2020-04-08
Available for pre-order. Item will ship after 8th April 2020

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Development of Thinking in Adulthood is a timely synthesis and evaluation of the current knowledge and emerging issues relating to adult cognitive development and learning.

Focusing on psychological and educational cutting-edge research as well as giving an overview of the key theorists such as Piaget and Kohlberg, Kallio and the team of expert contributors offer a holistic view on the development of adult thinking, representing perspectives from developmental, moral and social psychology, as well as education, and philosophy. These topics are divided into three sections: Adult Cognitive and Moral Development, Perspectives of Adult Learning, and Open Questions and New Approaches, offering introduction, analysis, and directions for future research.

This text is essential reading for students and researchers in developmental psychology and related courses as well as adult educators and teachers working in adult education.


Finland is a leading country in the academic fields of adult development and adult learning. This excellent volume brings together a range of Finnish contributors on cutting-edge adult cognitive development and learning topics, and I’m certain it will be of great interest to the English-speaking research community.

Oliver Robinson, University of Greenwich, London, UK, President of the European Society for Research in Adult Development

This book remains one of the benchmark introductions to adult cognitive development and learning. Dr. Kallio has done remarkable job of editing this work, maintaining a philosophical tone throughout with connections to current wisdom research implicitly and explicitly. The authors offer fundamental information on the major theories and models, but also critical insights for pondering basic concepts further. I recommend this as an introductory book both for students and professionals. Well and fluently written and researched, it provides a multiperspective- and integrative approach that ties together different traditions that illuminate the same phenomenon: adult change and transformation.

Judith Stevens-Long, Professor, Human Development, Fielding University, USA

This book is a must-read for everyone working with adult development – as practitioners or as researchers! Presenting and discussing perspectives from psychology, education and human resources, "Development of Adult Thinking" edited by Eeva K. Kallio, gives well worked out introductions to concepts, theories and models of adult learning. The anthology will be pivotal not only to the field of adult psychology, but across higher education, including the vast field of teacher education.

Guro Hansen Helskog, Associate Professor, University of South-Eastern Norway

Organisms, human and otherwise, are composed of multiple component systems. However, humans do not act as assemblies of independent parts – humans are integrated beings. Any slice of action necessarily involves some type of integration of all the psychological subsystems that make up the human organism. It is difficult, of course, to study the human action and experience as an integrated whole. The contributors to this volume show how human thinking operates as an integrated process and develops toward increasingly integrated outcomes. Over time, thinking that brings knowledge and practical problem-solving together with social and ethical understanding moves in the direction of wisdom. This book points to the types of thinking that we need to cultivate in order to address this lack.

Michael F. Mascolo, Professor, Academic Director, Merrimack College, USA

In 1984, Beyond Formal Operations, the first book to focus on development beyond Piaget’s formal operational period, was published. Since then, the field of Positive Adult Development has greatly expanded. From the original Society for Research in Adult Development (USA), there arose a European Society for Research in Adult Development. Eeva K. Kallio was one of the founders of that Society, and has been one of the most important contributors to both the ESRAD, and to research on a wide variety of aspects of Adult Development. This edited volume, whose contributions represent the work of a large number of Finnish researchers, is an example of the resulting expansion of ideas about adult development that has taken place. It shows well how many different aspects of adulthood can be studied from a developmental point of view.

Michael L. Commons, Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School, Department of Psychiatry, USA, founding member of the Society for Research in Adult Development

Table of Contents

  1. 1.      Eeva K. Kallio Introduction


    2.      Eeva K. Kallio From Multiperspective to Contextual Integrative Thinking in Adulthood: Considerations on Theorisation of Adult Thinking and Its Place as a Component of Wisdom   

    3.      Hannele Seppälä, Sari Lindblom & Eeva K. Kallio  Integrating Epistemic Knowledge and Logical Reasoning Skills in Adult Cognitive Development

    4.      Anna-Maija Pirttilä-Backman, Salla Ahola & Inari Sakki Personal Epistemologies and Social Representations – and How They Meet in People’s Conceptions of the Origin of Human Species

    5.      Soile Juujärvi & Klaus Helkama  Duties and Responsibilities in Adulthood: Integrating Care and Justice Perspectives

    6.      Jaana-Piia Mäkiniemi & Annukka Vainio Broadening the View of Morality, and a Study of Moral Development


    7.      Mari Murtonen & Erno Lehtinen   Adult Learners and Theories of Learning  

    8.      Mirjamaija Mikkilä-Erdmann & Tuike Iiskala   Developing Learning and Teaching Practices for Adults – Perspectives From Conceptual Change and Metacognition Research  

    9.      Auli Toom & Jukka Husu   Tacit Knowledge and Knowing at the Core of Individual and Collective Expertise and Professional Action

    10.  Päivi Tynjälä, Eeva K. Kallio & Hannu L. T. Heikkinen Professional Expertise, Integrative Thinking, Wisdom and Phronēsis □□ OPEN QUESTIONS AND NEW APPROACHES 11.□ Heidi Hyytinen, Liisa Postareff & Sari Lindblom□ Challenges in Exploring Individual’s Conceptions of Knowledge and Knowing: Examples of Research on University Students  

    12.  Pirjo Ståhle,  Laura Mononen, Päivi Tynjälä & Eeva K. Kallio   Systems Thinking and Adult Cognitive Development  

    13.  Miira Tuominen & Eeva K. Kallio  Logical Contradiction, Contrary Opposites and Epistemological Relativism: Critical Philosophical Reflections on the Psychological Models of Adult Cognitive Development

About the Editor

Eeva K. Kallio, PhD, is Adjunct Professor in University of Jyväskylä, Finland. She is the leader of Wisdom and Learning research team, founding member and Honorary President of the European Society for Research in Adult Development (ESRAD).

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Developmental / Adulthood & Aging