Development Theories Essay

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2. Summarise the psychological development theories outlined in this course. Whilst there have been many theorists and pioneers who have studied how a child can develop, the three theorists in this course are Sigmund Freud, Jean Piaget and Erik Erikson. Their theories and ideas on development describe human beings passing through different stages of life and all have differences and similarities based on the individual theorist’s views and speculations. Freud’s theory, is one of a psychosexual nature and he suggests that development was maintained and progressed through a basic primitive and sexual drive. He believed that as humans pass through different stages of life, they needed to remove tension by means of pleasure through one of the body’s organs, such as; the mouth, the anus and the genitals. He describes the part of the mind that focuses on the primitive needs of humans as the ‘id’. This is what he believed to be the origin or source of the natural or instinctive impulses and needs of a human. His first stage is the ‘Oral’ stage, where Freud suggests that a child from birth to 1 year takes gratification in the use of their mouth. This can involve biting, sucking or chewing. Next is the ‘Anal’ stage where a child has learnt to control their bowel movement and can take pleasure during bowel movements or even when these movements are controlled and withheld. This stage usually occurs between the ages of 1 – 3 years old. His third stage, the ‘Phallic’ stage, is where a child, between the ages of 3 – 5 years old, starts to become interested in their own sexual organs and will receive gratification through manipulation of the genitals. They will also start to notice differences and similarities between their parents and themselves, and here, girls can experience ‘penis envy’, whilst boys may experience ‘castration anxiety’ – a fear of losing their

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