The study of human growth and development has included many theories over the years. From the well known theories such as cognitive development theory to the lesser known theories such as the systems theory, they all have their strong points in some areas but lack in others. Psychosocial development theory attempts to include the biological, behavioral and social aspects of human development so as not to leave any areas out of consideration. The psychosocial theory is very useful when applied generally to the various stages of development, but the psychosocial theory is even more useful when supplemented with other theories of development that divulge into specificity. PS 121 Core Assessment
Human development is a very broad term. Development may mean how a person grows biologically, but it may also means how a person grows mentally. Development may also mean how a person matures as an individual, living and assimilating in into the various aspects of society. Psychosocial theory attempts to understand how people develop by studying all three of these dimensions of human development. That is to say, the psychosocial approach looks at the biological, psychological and social components that affect how individuals generally develop throughout the course of their lives.
The psychosocial theory has been expanded throughout the years. It may be argued that Freud is the originator of psychosocial theory, even though he did not call his theories that. Freud is most commonly known for the work he did in psychology relating to the sexual nature of people; sexual stages that everyone must go through in order to become a fully developed individual. Erikson essentially expanded on the sexual components of development. He added additional stages that one would pass through after the stages of sexual development that Freud theorizes have been realized (Newman & Newman, 2012, p. 65). Newman and Newman then introduce a new psychosocial theory that expands on Erikson to include even more differentiation between the stages in life, resulting in a total of eleven stages ranging from conception to death (Newman & Newman, 2012, p. 67).
Psychosocial theory of human development is a very convincing theory. Furthermore, it is a great theory to apply when interpreting the various components of growth and development throughout the course of life. The psychosocial approach provides great insight to general development, though it may be lacking in specifics. To make an analogy, if the psychosocial theory is a general family doctor, and a fine one at that, other theories on human development are the board certified specialists when it comes to the intricacies of the specific needs of the human body. To take the analogy one step further, if an individual needs routine medical attention, the general family doctor is the best doctor for the job, but if the individual needs a kidney specialist, then the nephrologist is the obvious choice. To that end, the psychosocial theory and other developmental theories complement each other and contribute overall to the health of the individual. The psychosocial theory is a good approach in understanding human development, but when analysis is supplemented with other theories of human development, the psychosocial theory shines.
In order to exemplify how the psychosocial theory is a great approach when supplemented with other theories of human development, a series of interviews and observations were completed over the course of several weeks. These interviews and observations sought to apply developmental significance and deduce meaning to the various stages of human growth. For example, a Kuwaiti male in the later adolescence stage of development was interviewed and observed at a rap concert. What can be interpreted from the interview? How can his life be observed in relation to the psychosocial and other theories of...
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