Accommodation is a term that can be used in different ways. Its meaning refers to the process and the result of accommodating: locating something in such a way that it can adapt or adjust to something else.
According to Digopaul, accommodation can refer to the process of locating objects in a certain environment. For example: “The accommodation of the furniture took me all afternoon, ” “We have to think about how we are going to accommodate the new machines. ”
It is also known as accommodation to what is carried out so that someone or something can adapt to the environment and establish itself, either temporarily or permanently: “Please take care of the accommodation of the visitors”, “The State has the moral obligation to accommodate immigrants who come persecuted from their countries.
In the field of psychology, accommodation is called a mechanism that allows an individual to change their cognitive structures to incorporate new knowledge. This process, detailed by Jean Piaget, may involve both changing an existing scheme and developing a different scheme that allows the new stimulus to be incorporated.
Jean Piaget was an acclaimed psychologist from Switzerland, who achieved great relevance thanks to his studies on intelligence, cognitive development and childhood. Their observations and conclusions are of great importance for the current training of future psychologists, and also for research. With regard to accommodation, which may also appear under the name of adjustment, it is one of the two fundamental processes of human learning, along with that of assimilation.
When a child is faced with a new stimulus, it is normal for him to try to add it to his own schemes. Of course, this is not possible in all cases, since sometimes it does not have an adequate scheme for such integration. Through accommodation, the brain can create or modify any of the existing ones to complete the process successfully.
By either of these two ways, creation or modification, there is a change in cognitive structures. It is then that the child can try again to assimilate the stimulus, already with the most favorable schemes. This is, in simpler words, the path of experience that we all go through in our lives.
The idea of accommodation, on the other hand, appears in the realm of the sense of sight. An accommodation is called what the lens does when it increases its refractive power for focusing on objects located at close range. The eye, in relaxation, is prepared to focus on what is located at a long distance. Through accommodation, the lens adapts as the refractive power increases.
In the case of vertebrate animals, a group in which we find ourselves humans, this increase in potency is achieved through two different pathways: in some cases the ciliary muscle (which is located inside the eye, attached to the eye) contracts. crystalline, and has a ring appearance), which increases the curvature and thickness; On the other hand, a movement of the lens can also occur (this is what happens in the eyes of the fish).
It should be mentioned that it is not always possible to achieve a perfect accommodation of the image, since there are certain limits, beyond which there is always a loss of sharpness (the image is out of focus), which is why objects are perceived as “blurred” shape. The shortest distance at which it is possible to see an object with a perfect accommodation, without distortions, is known as the near point.