Human Development Theories

Human development theories are models intended to account for how and why people become, as they are (Thomas 1997). Theories provide the framework to clarify and organize existing observations and to try to explain and predict human behaviour (Schroeder, 1992). It is important to recognize the complexity of human development and the theories that explain human development.

Through out history there have been theories about human development. The writer will look at the different Theorie's related to Psychoanalytic, Humanistic, and Cognitive Theory's. Psychoanalytic meaning behaviour development of the psyche, Humanistic meaning to become fully functional, cognitive meaning, thinking. The writer will look at the following theorists Sigmund Freud, Erik Erikson, Jean Piaget and Abraham Maslow of their theories through out time.

Freud was a theorist who wanted to look at humans and how they developed. He believed strongly that there were five sexual stages in life as follows the Oral, Anal, Phallic, latency and Genital. from when you were born though till you died. Freud also believed that many emotions were caused by unconcious sexual desires, some of which originated in infancy

Eriksons theory was that development resulted from the interaction between inner instincts and outer cultural and social demands: hence the name psychosocial stages. . The stages are as follows, basic trust verses mistrust, autonomy verses shame, and doubt, initiative verses inferiority, identity verses role confusion, intimacy verses isolation, generatively verses self absorption and stagnation, ego integrity verses despair. So from learning these he believed you could gain hope, will, purpose, competence, fidelity, love, care and wisdom.

Jean Piaget was a swiss scientist whose theories shaped the thinking of several generations of developmental psychologists. Piaget was only interested in " how does thinking develop (Bee pg.35).

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