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Erikson’s psychosocial theory

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1 Erikson’s psychosocial theory
Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

2 Erik Erikson Father abandoned before born.
Irregular work in Europe without an identity. Took a job as a teacher for children of Freud’s patients. Trained in psychoanalysis (i.e. Freud). Took name as Erikson (son of himself) symbolizing full attainment of sense of identity. Born in Germany from Danish parents. After father abandoned, Erikson’s mother married a Jewish Doctor. Erikson wasn’t told for years that his step-father wasn’t his biological father. So raised a Jew looking like a Scandinavian and accepted by neither. Moved to US after training as psychoanalysis…Studied Native Americans on reservations, further contribute to loss of sense of identity. Came to believe sense of identity was critical task of growing up. Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

3 Psychosocial Development
Psychosocial: Development of self in relationship to society Psycho: Mental processes Social: Relating to society Developmental changes in behavior result from the interaction between internal drives and cultural demands Psychosocial development is culturally relative: Children in all cultures go through the same sequence of stages, but each culture has its own way of directing the child’s behavior Social demands change within each culture over time Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

4 Erikson’s Stages of Psychosocial Development
Maturation and culture’s expectations create eight crises that the individual must resolve for healthy development Cultural demands change as a child ages Development continues throughout the lifespan Main goal in life is the search for identity Identity: Understanding and accepting one’s self and society Eight psychosocial stages throughout the lifespan influences identity Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

5 Erikson’s Stages of Psychosocial Development
Each stage is characterized by a crisis Crisis: a psychosocial challenge that presents opportunities for development Positive resolution of crisis leads to growth but negative resolution (or no resolution) leads to maladjustment Positive resolution: Constructive orientation toward future events related to that conflict Negative resolution: Problems resolving future crises “What doesn’t kill you makes you better.” When faced with situation in future, able to deal constructively i.e. successful resolution of trust stage enables you to be trustful towards other in future. Significant other… Negative resolution stuck at stage…Not able to trust parents, not able to trust significant other… African girls wet bed… Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

6 Erikson’s Stages of Psychosocial Development
Age (years) Crisis Infancy 0-1 Trust vs. Mistrust* Early Childhood 2-3 Autonomy vs. Shame & Doubt Preschool 3-5 Initiative vs. Guilt School Age 6-11 Industry vs. Inferiority Adolescence 12-20 Identity vs. Role Confusion* Young Adults Mid-20s Intimacy vs. Isolation* Adulthood 25-60 Generativity vs. Stagnation* Old Age 60+ Ego Integrity vs. Despair Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

7 Stage 1: Trust vs. Mistrust
Age: 0-1 years Primary Event: Feeding Stage 1: Trust vs. Mistrust Newborns cannot meet their own needs Have to trust that their mother meets their needs Trust: Essential trustfulness of others and sense of one’s own trustworthiness Positive Resolution: Trust in the world based on basic needs being met Parents’ Role: Provide warmth and responsiveness to child’s needs to foster a secure attachment What are newborn’s needs? Obviously can’t provide for self, so must have someone to provide Freud: Oral stage is limited to taking things in (food, sensorimotor stage) via mouth… Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

8 Stage 2: Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt
Age: 2-3 years Primary Event: Toilet Training Stage 2: Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt Failing at toilet training leads to shame and doubt in abilities Autonomy: Determination to exercise free will Shame and doubt about one’s self-control and independence results if: Trust crisis was not resolved Toilet training was too harsh Child’s will is broken by over-controlling parents Positive Resolution: Development of self-confidence based on encouragement and limit setting Parents’ Role: Balance the child’s desire for autonomy and parent’s need to control the child’s behavior What is key event for the Anal stage? Ask for toilet training stories…Not just here’s diaper, here’s toilet. Have to learn to control body’s impulses. Ross’s story…No shame there! Control over bladder is chance to acquire feelings of autonomy…control over body’s impulses. Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

9 Stage 3: Initiative vs. Guilt
Age: 3-5 years Primary Event: Independence Stage 3: Initiative vs. Guilt Initiative: Actively seek to impose sense of will on surroundings Must learn balance between acting and controlling impulses Guilt results if initiative frequently leads to punishment or disapproval Positive Resolution: Explore the environment with a sense of purpose Parents’ Role: Support the child’s initiative in appropriate situations When sweeping, 4 year old will want to help…Want to help with everything. What would happen if let 4 year old rule the house? What is the role of parents?  Be encouraging, but set firm rules. Too much of either results in too far. Oedipus complex: Impose sense of will…Penis envy and pencil study. Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

10 Stage 4: Industry vs. Inferiority
Age: 6-11 years Primary Event: School Stage 4: Industry vs. Inferiority Industry: Doing things that others value Successful experiences give sense of industry, competence, and mastery Unsuccessful experiences leads to feelings of inadequacy, inferiority, and no self-worth Positive Resolution: Productive work, success experiences, and understanding of progress Parents’ Role: Help children participate in activities where they are successful What did you learn in elementary school? Academic or in general… Begin school years. What is general purpose of school? Make students productive members of society…Do things that society values. Children learn to make things, use tools, and acquire the skills to be a worker and a potential provider. Freud: latency turn attention away from sex to other pursuits like school Competence: sense one can do things valued by others. ??Who are you?? I am a graduate student studying to do research in intelligence or motivation and/or teaching ed psych. I love to travel and serve others. I love to read and learn more about most things. Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

11 Stage 5: Identity vs. Role Confusion
Age: years Primary Event: Peer Relationships Stage 5: Identity vs. Role Confusion Identity: Integrated sense of self Answering: Who am I? Integrate beliefs in politics, religion, career, life purpose, family, etc. Identity crisis is the most significant conflict Role confusion: Inability to integrate beliefs, leaving a fragmented personality Positive Resolution: Strong sense of identity and plans for the future Parents’ Role: Help the child learn about options for their identity ?What do you want to be when you grow up? How do you know? (What led you to that decision?) Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

12 James Marcia’s Identity States
Committed to Identity? Yes No Searching for Identity? Identity Achievement Identity Moratorium Identity Foreclosure Identity Diffusion Pass out song sheets. Read over the lyrics of hte Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

13 Stage 6: Intimacy vs. Isolation
Age: mid-20s Primary Event: Loving Relationships Stage 6: Intimacy vs. Isolation Intimacy: Close committed relationship with someone Identity is necessary for intimacy with others Positive Resolution: Ability to self-disclose with another person Does not have to be romantic relationship ?What are characteristics of an intimate relationship? ?What do both parties need before can be part of an intimate relationship? ?Why would it be important to establish identity before can have intimacy? Genital Stage: Love other’s for their own sake Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

14 Stage 7: Generativity vs. Stagnation
Age: years Primary Event: Parenting Stage 7: Generativity vs. Stagnation Generativity: Desire to create things in the world that will outlive you Stagnation: Self-absorption Positive Resolution: Acts of caring beyond the self What things can you do that will outlive you? Describe a person who has achieved Generativity. Describe a person who is stagnating. Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

15 Stage 8: Ego Integrity vs. Despair
Age: 60+ years Primary Event: Reflection on Life Stage 8: Ego Integrity vs. Despair Ego Integrity: View that one’s life has had meaning and acceptance of one’s choices. Despair: Regret for what one has or has not done with their life Positive Resolution: Satisfaction about the past Despair of a wasted life. Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

16 Comparing Developmental Theories
Active/Passive Nature/Nurture Stage/Continuous Piaget Active Both Stage Information Processing Sociocultural Continuous Neo-Piagetians Social Learning Nurture Psychosocial Passive Attachment Ecological Systems Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

17 Critique of Psychosocial Theory
Strengths One of first developmental theories to focus on development across the lifespan Logical progression of life stages Weakness The theory does not explain why development occurs Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

18 Implications for Education
Importance of early relationships with caregivers Illustrates the significance of successful experiences in school Explains that children of different ages have different social needs Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

19 Revision Describe Erikson’s eight stages.
Explain what a teacher/parent can do to support development in each of the childhood stages Dr. K. A. Korb University of Jos

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