Cognitivism, derived from the term cognition (study of the human mind), refers to a psychological approach that holds that mental functioning can be best understood as an internal manipulation of symbols and uses existing knowledge for the acquisition of new knowledge. Cognitivism studies the process of assimilating and expanding the intellect. This process involves a complex physiological structure that is constantly absorbing information from the environment. This information can be absorbed either passively or actively, in formal educational settings or incidentally as a part of life. This information is then processed and stored for future use.