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Cultural-Historical Psychology

Publisher: Moscow State University of Psychology and Education

ISSN (printed version): 1816-5435

ISSN (online): 2224-8935


License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published since 2005

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Open Access Journal

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ZBR and ZPD: Is there a difference? 2373


Veresov N.N.
PhD in Psychology, Associate Professor, Faculty of Education, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia

The paper considers some problems of understanding the content of the theoretical notion of zone of proximal development in the English-language literature, related to unavailability of sources and some inaccuracies in translations. It is shown that, as a result of such inaccuracies, the notion of zone of proximal development (ZPD) turns out to be different in terms of its theoretical content from the notion of zona blizhayshego razvitiya (ZBR) (зона ближайшего развития, ЗБР), so that we can say that ZPD is not the same as ZBR. Simplification and fragmentation of basic theoretical ideas lead to some serious consequences, which cause difficulties both in the search for a common understanding and further development of cultural-historical theory, as well as in the practical application of ZBR in educational practices.

Keywords: cultural-historical psychology, ZBR, ZPD

Column: In celebration of the 120th birthday of Lev S. Vygotsky


Acknowledgements. I thank the Child and Community Development Faculty Research group for their support and flowersful discussion of this work. I thank Professor M. Dafermakis for his valuable comments. I am especially grateful to an unknown volunteer who collected and presented me more than 200 articles on ZPD published in 2010—2016.

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