Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Historical Overview of Child Development Theories Part 2

William James - Theory of Self
Social Development
  • The I or Existential Self 
    • Separate from the environment and other people
    • Maintains continuous existence over time
    • Self-recognition emerges between 9-15 month
  • The Me-Not-Me or Reflective Self
    • Perceives the physical, material, and relationship qualities of experience 
    • Sense of agency – awareness that our actions cause other people and objects to react in predictable ways
    • The development of self
John Watson - Behaviorism
Environment is the primary factor determining the growth and development on children
Classical conditioning (Pavlov's dogs)

B. F. Skinner - Operant Conditioning
The environment is the primary factor determining child growth and development
Expanded on Watson
Children’s behaviors can be increased or decreased by applying 
  • positive reinforcers (rewards) such as food and praise
  • negative reinforcers (punishment) such as criticism and withdrawal of attention

Albert Bandura - Social Learning
Behaviorist who included social influences on child growth and development
Modeling and observational learning
Eric Erikson - Psychosocial Theory
Predicts several stages of development including trust, autonomy, identity, and intimacy
How these stages are dealt with by child development specialists determines individual capacity to contribute to society and experience a happy, successful life
Basic trust vs. Mistrust: Birth to 12-18 months (important event: feeding) The infant must form a first loving trusting relationship with the caregiver or develop a sense of mistrust
Autonomy vs. Shame/Doubt: 18 months to three years (important event: potty training) The child’s energies are directed toward the development of physical skills, including walking, grasping, controlling the sphincter. The child learns to control, but may develop shame and doubt if not handled well.
Initiative vs. Guilt: three to six years (important event: independence) The child continues to  become more assertive and to take more initiative but may be too forceful, which can lead to guilt feelings.



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