Psychosocial Development Theory

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Erik Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development is one of the best-known theories of personality and development. Similar to Sigmund Freud, Erikson believed that personality develops in a series of predetermined stages. Unlike Freud’s theory of psychosexual stages, Erikson’s theory describes the impact of social experience across the whole lifespan. At each stage of development, Erikson described conflicts that act as turning points in life. Erikson’s Stages of Development Summary: An eight stage theory of identity and psychosocial development Erik Erikson (1902 -1994), a German-born American psychoanalyst. Key Terms: Erikson’s stages, psychosocial, development Erikson’s Stages of Development Erik Erikson, a German psychoanalyst heavily influenced by Sigmund Freud, explored three aspects of identity: the ego identity (self), personal identity (the personal idiosyncrasies that distinguish a person from another, social/cultural identity (the collection of social roles a person might play). Erikson’s psychosocial theory of development considers the impact of external factors, parents and society on personality development from childhood to adulthood. According to Erikson’s theory, every person must pass through a series of eight interrelated stages over the entire life cycle. 1. Infant (Hope) – Basic Trust vs. Mistrust 2. Toddler (Will) – Autonomy vs. Shame 3. Preschooler (Purpose) – Initiative vs. Guilt 4. School-Age Child (Competence) – Industry vs. Inferiority 5. Adolescent (Fidelity) – Identity vs. Identity Diffusion 6. Young Adult (Love) – Intimacy vs. Isolation 7. Middle-aged Adult (Care) – Generativity vs. Self-absorption 8. Older Adult (Wisdom) – Integrity vs. Despair These eight stages, spanning from birth to death, are split in general age

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