Social cognitive theory focuses on the idea of children affecting their own social behavior through the use of their ability to think and reason over their own thoughts, emotions, motives, and behaviors and those of others. Social cognitive theorists focus on the concept of self-socialization, and in Robert Selman's case more specifically on the role-taking concept. According to Selman, children go through four complex, discontinuous stages in their process of self- socialization, organized in the table below:




6- 8 years old
Children realize and begin to appreciate that others have different perspectives, but are under the misconception that this is due to others' lack of the same knowledge/information they themselves have.
8- 10 years old
Children are now able to actually see things from another individual's perspective.
10- 12 years old
Children regularly compare and dissect different perspectives they come in contact with (as well as their own).
12 years old and up
Adolescents develop a "generalized other" perspective (the majority's beliefs) and systematically compare every new perspective they encounter to this.

*All information on this page was derived from source number 2 found on reference page.*

For more information on Selman's theory consider these sites: