Medicine & USMLE

Sensorimotor Cognition

Piaget Cognitive Development
  1. Sensorimotor Cognition
  2. Preoperational Cognition
  3. Concrete Operational Cognition
  4. Formal Operational Cognition


Piaget’s stages of cognitive development describe four sequential stages of cognitive ability. The sensorimotor stage is the first stage, and it is seen in babies from birth to 2 years of age. During this stage, the key cognitive ability developed is that of object permanence. Object permanence is the ability to know that an object continues to exist, even when it cannot be directly perceived.

Key Points

  • Sensorimotor
    • Period: birth - 2 years
    • Experiences environment through actions and sensations
      • Accommodates schemas (learns) in light of new knowledge/info
    • Object permanence