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Abstract thinking is the ability to imagine other perspectives or alternatives. It includes the ability to explore several solutions to a problem, think about the future, imagine "what if," and understand that some things may symbolize or stand for other things (metaphors).
Abstract thinking usually begins in the early to middle teen years (about 12 to 14 years of age).
Last Revised: May 16, 2011
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: John Pope, MD - Pediatrics & Louis Pellegrino, MD - Developmental Pediatrics
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