Explain the Principal Psychological Perspectives Applied to the Understanding of the Development of Individuals

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Unit 29 Assignment 1:

* P1 Explain the principal psychological perspectives applied to the understanding of the development of individuals * M1 Discuss the principal psychological perspectives applied to the understanding of the development of individuals * D1 Evaluate the principal psychological perspectives applied to the understanding of the development of individuals

There are numerous debates in regards to developmental psychology. One of the main debates to begin with is nature vs nurture; some individuals believe that we are products of our environment while others regards us while others believe that we are products of our genetics. John Locke believes that when we are born we are a “tabula rasa” a blank slate which means that he supports the idea that we are products of our environment and also supports behaviourism. Another debate is continuity v discontinuity, some individuals have created continuity theories and others have created discontinuity theories. Continuity theorists believe that the development of an individual is constantly continuous while discontinuous theorists believe that there are specific periods where individuals develop. For example Freud’s psychosexual stages are a discontinuous theory. There is also an issue of nomothetic vs idiographic; some theorists adopt a nomothetic approach while others adopt an idiographic approach. Individuals that adopt a nomothetic approach create theories based on what we share with others, and find general laws that can be applied to large groups of people, for example behaviourism is a nomothetic approach. On the other hand the idiographic approach goes into large detail for the individual to investigate why we are unique, for example Freud’s theory is an idiographic approach. There are six principle psychological perspectives which are applied to the understanding which includes; behaviourism, social learning, psychodynamic, humanistic, cognitive and developmental. These perspectives can be used to explain the development of individuals. Cognitive development starts when developing from when we are born. It refers to how intelligence, conscious thought and problem solving develop from infancy. As well as improving the ability to think, learn and reason. Jean Piaget is associated with the cognitive perspective in psychology and that perspective can be applied to understand cognitive development. To begin with the cognitive perspective concerns itself with our thinking processes and likens to brain to a computer. Piaget believed that there were 4 stages of cognitive development within children; his theory is therefore a discontinuity theory as he believes there are age specific stages. A child had to meet each stage before they could progress to the next stage. Piaget believed that all children went through these stages: He believed that the first stage that children went through was sensori-motor which occurs when the child was 0-2 years of age. During this period of time experience world experiences through their movement and senses. He believed the second stage that children went through was pre-operational which occurs when the child was 2-7 years of age. During this period of time the child’s language develops as well as their memory capabilities. As well as that their motor skills also develop such as skipping. The child may also be selfish. They also see things in their own perspective (egocentrism) He believed the third stage that children went through was concrete operational which occurs when the child was 7-11 years of age. During this period of time the child’s conversational skills develop and their logical thinking also develops however they are still not capable of mentally solving problems, they need to be able to see it to be able solve the problem. He believed the final stage of cognitive development was formal operational stage, which occurs when the child is 11 years and above. During this period of time the child can use...
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