So how does this Piagetian theory work out? Well, we complained with regard to Freud and Skinner that there were all sorts of concerns, including the concern of falsifiability, which is the theories, at least for Skinner's theory applied to humans and Freud's theory maybe all together, we're often so vague and slippery that they couldn't be falsified. But this is not a problem Piaget. So he made interesting and falsifiable claims. If you discovered, for instance, that one year olds did have object permanence or that five year olds can easily pass a certain conservation task, that'd be really damaging to Piaget's theory. Piaget had a rich theoretical framework. He studied many, many domains. He had all sorts of cool ideas and cool hypotheses. And his work turned out to be extremely generative. Generations of developmental psychologists followed up on Piaget trying to refute him, trying to refine him, trying to support him. Really confident, and I think we should be confident, that he was onto something in his claims about the limitations of children and the idea that children think genuinely differently from adults. And finally is striking findings, these are cool findings and real discoveries. And again, if you have access to a young child and you want to try out some of these experiments yourself, you will find that they often work, and kind of, it will knock your socks off. So there's a lot of good things to be said, but science develops and we move away from initial theories as we get a better understanding. And Piaget's theories have some limitations. One limitation is theoretical. So he talked about development in terms of assimilation accommodation. But there's something frustrating here, because what does that really mean? Is that more than a metaphor? For some people, Piaget was like saying children go some how from having a black and white television set to a color television set. They have radical transformations. But he didn't really provided the theory of how, not at the neurological level, not at a computational level, not at a structural level. And if you would ask, so how does assimilation accommodation really work to give rise to these great transformations from one stage to another? It's not clearly an answer. Another critique is methodological. So Piaget interviewed children and all of his work was developed based on these interviews, but there are limitations of Q&A. Children are not very verbal. Children are often sensitive to what psychologists call task demands or experimenter demands, where they'll say certain things to please an experimenter. And children, like all of us, might not really know the workings of their own mind. So when modern day developmental psychologists study children, we use all sorts of different methods to study them. And so many of the great developments in psychology aren't necessarily developments of ideas, but more developments of methods. And methods are great. Finally, there's now a large consensus within developmental psychology that Piaget may well have just been mistaken about what children know. And if you test them improperly, if you test them in different ways and using more clever methods, you'll discover that children, even babies, are far smarter than Piaget understood. This brings us to the next topic, which is the modern science of infant cognition. Through most of our intellectual history, philosophical history, psychological history, we thought of babies as summarized in this Onion headline, Babies Are Stupid. Babies just don't know that much. But as a result of this transformative work by scientists, many of them working today, we've come to a different conclusion, one nicely summarized in this LIFE magazine, Babies are Smarter than you Think.