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Teodóra Szitás & László Kasik: National and International Investigations on Social Problem Solving Among Preschool Children

The aims of our study were to describe the general and, specifically, preschool children’s characteristics of social problem solving; the assessment tools which are suitable for exploring preschool children’s social problem solving; as well as the international and national research results with these tools. The assessment tools can be divided into two groups, which either (1) allow direct measurement of preschoolers, or (2) explore parental and pedagogical opinions about children’s social problem solving. Assessment tools used directly with children help us understand how children relate to and solve their problems, and also reveal individual differences among them (Gál & Kasik, 2015). Although external evaluators such as parents and teachers can provide more information about children’s problem solving, significant differences may arise between parents’ and educators’ opinions (Winsler & Wallace, 2002). There is less information about the characteristics of preschool children’s social problems mostly because it is difficult to examine this process due to the ongoing development of their cognitive and verbal characteristics (Kasik, 2015). The newest research results show that there are less tools for direct use with children, and that it is necessary to develop a new assessment tool which features visual elements as well – this way problems that arise due to cognitive, linguistic, emotional or social characteristics can be eliminated (Yilmaz et al., 2018; Yükçü & Demircioğlu, 2020). Our future research involves developing a new questionnaire that covers the social problem-solving process with verbal (short stories) and visual (pictures representing the same situation) elements, where children evaluate different stories from certain aspects with the help of questions. Data collected from the main research will contribute to creating a new intervention program for educators.

MAGYAR PEDAGÓGIA 120. Number 4. 373-389. (2020)

Levelezési cím / Address for correspondence: Szitás Teodóra, Szegedi Tudományegyetem Neveléstudományi Doktori Iskola. H–6722 Szeged, Petőfi Sándor sgt. 32–34. Kasik László, Szegedi Tudományegyetem Neveléstudományi Intézet; Szegedi Tudomány-egyetem Szociális Kompetencia Kutatócsoport. H–6722 Szeged, Petőfi Sándor sgt. 32–34.


Magyar Tudományos Akadémia