Developmental Theories Essay Examples and Topics

Uncertainty reduction theory

Introduction Uncertainty reduction theory is based on the tradition that strangers need to minimize the level of doubt in their early relations. The theory is based on the concept that people find it difficult to communicate due to uncertainty of the other person’s reaction. However, this insecurity can be reduced through interpersonal communication where relations […]

Role of the Unconscious in Personality Theories

Introduction In the discussion of how the unconscious mind influences personality, one cannot negate the role of psychoanalysis. According to Kihlstrom, Beer, and Klein, psychoanalysis refers to the “aspects of Freud’s work and research, including Freudian therapy and the research methodology that he used to develop his theories” (2002, p.68). In the formulation of the […]

The Information Processing Theory

In the early 1990s, many scholars of developmental psychology, disenchanted by the antimentalistic and biases of behavioral psychology and shortcoming of Piaget’s theory, shifted to cognitive psychology and computer science to seek new thoughts and insights about children’s thinking. Computer systems that rely on mathematically programmed operations to offer solutions enabled these researchers to formulate […]

Psychological Development Theory

Introduction Mental health issues are most prevalent among the aged since there are significant life changes at this life stage. Retirement is one of the issues that cause anxiety and depression. In this case, the aged feel bored and do not know what they can do to keep themselves occupied. The retired often feel insignificant […]

Theories of Substance Addiction

Introduction Substance addiction refers to a condition where one develops heavy dependence on drugs. People use drugs and alcohol because of the pleasurable effects of drugs. Unfortunately, continuous drug use leads to development of compulsive behaviors. This often hinders one from living a normal life. Substance addition is characterized by physical dependence and emotional stress. […]

Motor, Sensory and Perceptual Development

All living things need to react to changes in their environment to protect their bodies from injuries and at the same time get access to essential needs. The human body consists of millions of sensory nerves that detect and inform the body about unpleasant conditions around or within their bodies (Upledger 2010). However, not all […]

Motivational Theory and Generation Y

Motivation theories explain about human nature and human needs. These theories demystify the nature of people and the forces that drive people into action. Motivational theory explains why people take the actions they take at work. These theories can be classified into organismic or mechanistic. Mechanistic theories view the human being as passive and needing […]

Theory of Knowledge

Knowledge is very fundamental in the life of a person and it is therefore very necessary to fully understand the various ways of knowing. Traditionally, there are four basic ways of knowing which were developed by different philosophers. These four ways of knowing are depicted in the TOK diagram of knowledge. The sources of knowledge […]

Counseling Theories

Sketch of Theorist Carl Ransom Rogers (1902 – 1987) grew up in a very religious and ascetic family and was expected to become a minister, but chose to study psychotherapy instead (Prochaska and Norcross 114). He started his career as a child psychologist in New York and then moved on to training the students in […]

Theories of Human Development

This paper is aimed at discussing the theories of human development which were introduced by Erik Erikson and Jean Piaget. Much attention should be paid to the way in which these psychologists explain the role of culture that includes a set of values, beliefs, and attitudes that shape the behavior of an individual (Matsumoto, 2001). […]

Theory of Change

Introduction Theories of change have broadened since 1970s to include family and society as integral components of psychotherapy. Like other therapists, I have realized that therapies should be responsive to the needs of individuals, families, and communities for clients to change according to their social and physical environments. Research has proved that therapies are effective […]

“Self-determination Theory and the Facilitation of Intrinsic Motivation, Social Development, and Well-Being”

Human beings can be divided into two main categories. Firstly, there are those who are considered to be fully engaged because they tend to be proactive. On the other hand, there are those who have been alienated by the world because they have passive characteristics (Ryan and Deci 77). The authors of the article note […]

Life Development Theories

At the time Steve Jobs had been giving his commencement speech at Stanford University he was at the middle adulthood stage of the life development cycle. This stage begins at the age of 40 years and usually ends age at the age of 65. At the time Steve jobs had been giving this speech he […]

Personality theories: the nature of the being

The thirst for the understanding of human nature is one of the main reasons why scientists spend most of their lives experimenting on ideas and forming theories that explain why certain things are the way they are and the effect that they have on a person, in cases where the attainment of tangible results to […]

Theorists’ beliefs, and assumptions and the theorist are helping style

The major assumption of Albert Ellis’ rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT) is that the origin of people’s psychological problems is the people themselves, and how they interpret situations and events (Corey 2009). Another assumption of the approach is that behaviors, emotions and cognitions are interrelated and, as such, they tend to interact. The relationship is […]

Lifespan Developmental Theories

Approaches to Lifespan Development Nature versus Nurture debate reflects two contrasting approaches to understanding the specifics of the factors influencing the lifespan development of a person. The first one is based on the belief that humans acquire most of their traits from nature, which means that the hereditary factor is the one determining the development […]

Review of Systems Theory

Abstract Over the years, the application of the Systems theory in different fields of study has escalated. It has played a pivotal role in analyzing various aspects that impact our lives as human beings. Within the field of marriage and family therapy, it has been used in conflict resolution between members of the family. In […]


Intelligence has always been hard to define although both traditional and modern psychologists have come up with suggested meanings. Based on early theorists, intelligence revolves around having the capacity to engage in a learning process (Sigelman & Rider, 2011). Therefore, it can be viewed as the amount of knowledge that has been acquired by an […]

Personal Theory of Counseling

Introduction Many scholars have come up with various theories that try to explain the nature of human behavior and the factors that cause the differences in the same. However, there are some discrepancies in these theories and as such individuals continue to develop new theories everyday. This has brought about the emergence of personal theory, […]

Behaviors Development Theory

Introduction There are numerous theories t explaining human behavior. Theses theories attempts to explain changes in human behavior because of certain conditions or situations. Many studies have paid a lot of attention on child development, but there is an increasing interest in the old people, while other age groups have been given little attention (Papalia […]

Theories of Change underlying Constructivist Therapies

Constructivism Constructivism is an approach used to gain insight into an individual’s psychology and to initiate change in a person (Berg, 1994). Today, it influences many techniques of psychotherapy by concentrating on an individual’s inner and outer mechanisms of constructing meaning. Constructivism is not based on a particular theory or method. Rather, it is a […]

Personality Theories- Normal and Abnormal Development

When defining human behavior, it is not easy to define what normal or abnormal development is. Different approaches can be used to define normal or abnormal development. These include use of statistics, socially accepted standards, a person’s feelings, or even biological injuries. Use of personality theories is one way of exploring normal and abnormal development […]

Erikson’s Theory of Psychosocial Development

Introduction Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development was developed by Erik Erikson and first published in his 1950 book Childhood and Society though he later revised the theory and published it in subsequent books beginning from the late 1950s to the 1980s. This theory is one of the most recognized theories of personality in the field […]

Eriksonian paradigm of stage development

Introduction Erik Erikson is one of the most popular modern psychologists and is considered to be an evolutionary psychologist; his theory of psychosocial development stipulates that an individual goes through eight evolutionary stages of human development. His contribution to the field of psychology, particularly personality developmental, is phenomenal. Additionally, his theory is considered to be […]

Incorporating Human development theory

Introduction There are numerous inferences that can be drawn from Piaget and Maslow’s ideologies that they formulated, ratified, and presented to explain various aspects of human development and other considerable provisions. Human development is an elaborated process requiring various considerable factors in order to illuminate its diverse aspects. Concurrently, it is crucial to consider such […]

Theories of Addiction: General Counseling Methods

General counseling methods There are numerous counseling methods applicable in the treatment of addictions. They are helpful in establishing critical treatment methods meant to curb the aspects of drug abuse and the alleged addictions. One of the general counseling methods applicable in this context is the motivational interviewing. Drug addicts require well-orchestrated counseling mechanisms that […]

Campbell and Fiske theory

Abstract The purpose of this paper is to examine the article by Campbell and Fiske (1959) entitled, “Convergent and discriminate validation by the multitrait-multimethod matrix”. The paper will attempt to describe why Campbell and Fiske maintain why it is important to assess multiple traits in test construction, as well as to assess traits with multiple […]

Four-drive theory

Introduction In the contemporary world, the importance of the employees in determining the success of an organisation has significantly increased. For instance, the employees’ level of productivity and ability determines the overall cost of production per unit. Therefore, it is necessary to have employee motivation measures in order to maximize the level of their performance. […]

Object Relations Theories of Different Psychoanalytic

Sigmund Freud Freud’s most popular theories are related to the unconscious mind and defense mechanisms. The Id, the Ego, and the Superego are considered to be the levels of consciousness a person’s brain functions on the basis of. According to an Austrian neurologist, the basic motivational energy of human life is considered to be sexual […]

Multiple intelligences and assessment strategies

Multiple intelligences Different students are endowed with different learning abilities and capabilities that they normally use to solve problems and learn. Based on the broad spectrum of intelligence demonstrated by students, learning psychologists have come up with multiple intelligences aimed at helping such students (Lane, n.d). What this seems to imply is that students have […]

Personal theory: multidimensional theory of psychology

Introduction As a psychologist, an individual should be fully conversant with the way that people develop various behaviors, emotions, and thinking processes. This aspect is necessary for only then will a psychologist work on programs that can help in shaping of certain negative behaviors among his or her clients. Since people are diverse in many […]

Language Acquisition and Development

Introduction Learning language is a crucial factor of development. Children begin to learn language from a very early stage in life and they interact, grow and develop. There are several theories that have been postulated to explain different mean of language acquisition. Some indicate that people actively learn and construct the meaning of that language […]

Traits Theory in Leadership

Introduction Leadership was first used by Greeks to refer to those who were known as first among equals. The term involved operations on the platform of accountability which was used in enhancing equity within the society. Assertiveness, courage, and imitation were some of the traits considered to be responsible for leadership effectiveness amongst individuals (Zaccaro, […]

Synthesizing and Comparing Vygotsky’s and Piaget’s Theories

Cognitive development refers to the gradual process through which the mind of a child goes through towards maturity. This process takes time because the thinking capacity and understanding is a gradual process. There are two theories that have been trying to explain the growth of a child’s mind, and that is Piaget’s and Vygotsky’s theories. […]

How the Cultural Aspects of Asians Might Be Applied To the Traditional Psychological Theory

Human beings have always been interested in understanding how culture influence psychology either through beliefs or customs. There have been studies on the links between culture and psychology since the 19th century. Psychology experts have come to learn that culture has a major role to play in the way psychology is shaped. With people being […]

Theory of Mind

Discussion Theory of mind refers to ability to infer full range of mental states, such as desires, belief, emotions, intensions, knowledge, imaginations, and others that enables us to explain and predict other’s behavior (Trevarthen, 1995, p. 48). It is a broad construct that is reflected in numerous kinds of knowledge and skills. Theory of mind […]

Bandura’s Social Learning Theory/Observational Learning

Introduction The social learning theory as postulated by Albert Bandura stresses on the importance of modeling and observing the attitudes, emotional reactions, and behaviors of other people. As such, social learning theories tries to explain the behaviors demonstrated by humans in the form of uninterrupted mutual contact between behavioral, cognitive, and environmental influences. Bandura was […]

Behaviourism and Piaget’s Educational Theories

Introduction Learning is, essentially a change in behaviour and understanding. Various learning theories attempt to explain how people and animals learn. Right from the time of Aristotle, various philosophers and theoreticians aimed at defining it. As a result, a number of schools of thoughts emerged. Behaviourism and the cognitive theory of Piaget are chief among […]

Erik Erikson’s Eight Stages of Psychosocial Development

Erik Erikson (1995), asserted that personality continues developing during an individual’s life span (p.37). As adulthood appears closer, adolescents focus their attention to their status in the society. As a result of this, Erikson devised a structured theory of development over the lifespan that has been extremely influential in understanding how youngsters manage identity issues […]

The handbook of conflict: theory and practice

The authors of the book “the handbook of conflict: theory and practice” tailored the text to suit both the student and the professionals who have the desire of deepening their knowledge and understanding on issues of conflict and constructive conflict management. In this paper, chapters 31, 32, and 34 which focus on Teaching Conflict Resolution […]

The Development of Ability to Critical Thinking

Modern tendencies in the progress of all the aspects of our life require our quick reactions to them and proper examining of their peculiarities. That is why it is necessary to find new approaches to the analysis of many aspects of our everyday life. From this point of view, critical thinking is one of the […]

Inter-psychic Theories Adlerian Theory (in adolescence)

Alfred Adler differed with Fred Jung’s intra-psychic theory and adopted the inter-psychic theory to explain human behavior. In his conception of personality, he chose to use the term “individual psychology” to refer to his studies on the uniqueness of individual persons. In collaboration with Harry Stack Sullivan, their studies maintained that a particular individual was […]

Concept of Mezirow’s Theory

Major assumptions of Mezirow’s theory For a transformation to occur, one must have plenty of information about the old worldview as well as the new one. It is quite difficult to change how one conceptualizes issues if one does not have a firm grasp on the alternatives that are prevalent out there. Therefore, a thorough […]

Nature v/s Nurture in Human behaviour development

People behave differently when exposed to similar circumstances; behaviour is an element of genetic factors, attitude, social norms and perceived behavioural conduct that stimulates a response to a certain action or situation. Psychologists have continued debate whether behaviour is a function of nature or nurture. Genetics predispositions endow human beings with inborn abilities and traits, whereas […]

Theories of Human Development

Abstract Human development is a very complex process and no single theory can be sufficient enough to explain these processes. This paper focuses on various theories that attempt to explain the development processes and factors that influence them. The study explores different theories of motor development, their pros and cons. The paper also examines theories […]

Theories of Personality

Through the eyes of a person who has watched the movie “Interview with the Iceman”, Richard Kuklinski, who could not stop at anything that could prevent him from murdering his victims, is a hardened serial killer, whose personality is attributed to the brutal up bringing he received from his equally brutal parents: a father who […]

Three Theories Approach

Psychoanalytic Theory The psychoanalytic theory was developed by Freud Sigmund in the late 19th century. Freud states in this theory that the impact of early childhood experiences that are stored in an individuals subconscious play a big role in the development of emotional problems in adulthood. In this theory, human nature is based on determinism. […]

Effect of Humanistic Theory on Individual Personalities

Humanistic Personality Theories Matrix   Theory Assumptions Reliability Validity Application Holistic-Dynamic Theory- Maslow People are wholly driven by motivations. Different motives determine people’s behavior It is possible to arrange hierarchically human needs. Similar basic needs motivate all people.  The theory comes in handy when explaining the behaviors which are extreme in nature The theory is […]

The Lifespan Perspective of Development

Introduction Lifespan development is a progressive process of development in a human being involving an increase in age, which begins at conception and ends with death (Sugarman, 2000, p. 56). In addition, lifespan development can be divided into four levels depicting advanced functionality and character changes as an individual moves from one level to another. […]

An Assessment of the American Psychological Association in the Development of Professional Knowledge and Abilities of Members

Consecutive studies demonstrate that career success is primarily a function of ability, personality, knowledge, opportunity, and the interactions between these variables (Rode et al., 2008). Additionally, the scope of job tasks, responsibilities, and expectations have also been cited as critical determinants of career success. Abele & Spurk (2009) defines career success as the positive psychological […]

Development Stages in Infant-Father Relationship

Introduction The topic on infancy has been written and discussed boldly specially regarding the development stages of the Infants. The infancy bonding in many researches that have successfully been concluded indicate that an Infant bonds more with the mother. This is because the infant spend most of its infancy period in the nursing care of […]

The role of genetics in development

Genetic factors have a significant role in determining human development. It involves understanding the inheritance of genes from parents to offspring and gene processes that may have impacts on human development. Researchers have concentrated on understanding human growth and differentiation right from the fertilized ova to adulthood. They have noted that development and various characteristics […]

Theorist Bio-sketch

The origin of the psychoanalysis theory is traced back to the end of XIX – the beginning of XX century and is closely connected to the works of famous Austrian psychologist Sigmund Freud. His works gave impulse to the further development of this field of psychological study. Erik Erikson, the outstanding American researcher in psychoanalysis, […]

Developmental Theories in Psychology

Introduction Interests in the psychology of child development have led to development of several theoretical concepts. Initially, interests of these studies were on abnormal behaviors and development among children. However, later studies focused on other areas, which included child development. These studies provide theoretical accounts that are vital for understanding cognitive, physical, social, and emotional […]

Levels of Play Development

Introduction Play is a one of the most effective ways for children to acquire language and speech skills (Owens, 2012). Interaction through play helps children get the necessary knowledge from various elements of the environment. Play is part of the process of development which has four important levels. It is important to note that as […]

Social Theories and Concepts in Forrest Gump

“Forrest Gump” is a movie that narrates the story of a man from the time he is a child up to the time he is a grown up working in a shrimp boat. The movie presents the audience with a chronological sequence of events that begin from 1960s to date. Therefore, the movie has several […]

Lifespan development and the human servises

Every stage of human development is significant and unique as people develop, acquire new knowledge and adopt new behavioural models. Thus, in infancy (up to one year), the child is dependent on its parents; in childhood (1-10 years old), children rapidly develop physically, mentally and socially; adolescence (12-18 years old) is characterised by numerous transformations […]

Conditioning Theory by B.F. Skinner

Brief Overview of the theory According to Skinner, operant conditioning is a form of conditioning that that influences the formation of personality (Skinner, 1948, p.23). In other words, it is a learning method where people’s behavior is changed with the introduction of different incentives and reinforcements. External factors should be considered in explaining the behavior […]

Erik Erikson’s Identity Theory

All human beings are different in one way or another. Human beings are not born with identities; however, they acquire their identities with time. Identity crisis occurs during teenage years when people struggle between identity and confusion. The balance between identity and confusion lies in commitment making and identity. Since life contains lessons, Erikson’s theory […]

How do the research findings of Cognitive, Developmental and Social Psychology apply to real world issues?

Introduction Psychology is defined by American Psychological Association (APA) as a “diverse discipline, grounded in science, but with nearly boundless applications in everyday life” (APA, 2011 pr. 6). Psychologists conduct basic research, developing and testing theories through cautiously refined research methods involving neuropsychological methods, animal studies, observation, survey questionnaires, controlled experimentation, Qualitative and descriptive research, computational […]

The Concept of Self or Identity

The concept of self is defined as the characteristics which make an individual unique from other people. People behave differently because of the different characteristics each one possesses. The self is responsible for the actions that one takes as well as his/her thoughts. Philosophers have played a major role in the study of the concept […]

Eysenck Theories’ Analysis

Processing efficiency theory This theory was offered by Eysenck in 1982 and was later developed by this and other scientists, including Calvo and Derakshan (Chong, 2003). The theory is based on the assumption that there is a strong interdependence between the stress level and the ability of an individual to perform different tasks. To be […]

Information Processing Theory

Introduction The information processing theory approach is the study involving cognitive development in psychology. Developmental psychologists who recognize and use the information processing perspective note that mental maturity is as a result of the child’s basic components changing (Shaffer & Kipp, 2010). This equates the human mind to a computer whereby the information processed is […]

Skinner’s Theory of Radical Behaviorism

Human beings are quite complex and understanding the real cause of their behavior can be a daunting task for a layman. In a bid to understand the dynamics of human actions, psychological studies were introduced in institutions of higher learning to shed light on the intricacies surrounding human thoughts. Several psychologists emerged in the early […]

The Life Span Perspective of Development

During the life, people change significantly with references to their physical appearance and characteristics and with references to their mental and emotional progress. The life span perspective of the human development is based on the idea that a person moves through several stages of development during the whole life (Berger, 2011, p. 7). Thus, certain […]

Theory of Child Development

The attachment theory is a theory of child development and a creation of the British psychiatrist by the name John Bowlby. According to this theory, children are born in a state of immaturity and have to receive care and protection from adults for many years. Infant mother behavior promotes the survival of a child and […]

Concept Of “Four Idols”

Sir Frances Bacon identified and explained the reasons for different human behaviors. He applied the concept of “four idols” in his investigations (Mazlish 7). There are extensive debates on the significance of these four idols. Accordingly, there exist several investigations concerning the practicality and effects of these four idols. Bacon observed that the human being […]

How ADHD develops into adult ADD

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) refers to a condition that occurs in children that involves deficiencies in motivating and regulating oneself (Ashley, 2005, p.24). These deficiencies result in extensive and involuntary distractions, problems with organization, procrastination and poor prioritization. ADHD is a recurrent and long-lasting condition that begins in the early years of childhood and […]

Human Development Theories

Introduction Freud developed theories that assist in understanding the developmental stages of individuals. He approached psychology in a three split entities such as “id”, “ego”, as well as the “super-ego.” “Id” is the primary drive with the “ego” and the “super-ego” providing a control for the drive. In addition, the “super-ego” acts as the alternate […]

Theory of motivation

Motivation is a commonly used term that can be defined in different ways. The term is derived from the word, motivate which is used to refer to the desires or impulses that make one to do or engage in particular activities or doings. In the context of the work environment, the term motivation can be […]

Psychosocial Theory of Development by Erick Erikson

Psychosocial affected his scholarly work in many ways, having been born in an extra-marital relationship. He was born at a time when extra marital sex was not allowed in society in Europe. Erikson is the father of identity formation theory. He admired the postulations of psychosexual theory and went ahead to develop his own theory […]

Moral Development and Its Relation to Psychology

While discussing psychological notions, moral values and judgments are avoided. Nevertheless, the concept of morality is closely connected with many psychological, social, and cultural dimensions that shape a foundation for the definition. In this respect, social learning approaches consider morality an outcome of environmental patterns and forces forming the behavior of a person in a […]

Attachment Theory

Introduction This paper reports on the attachment theory and how life experience affects one’s emotional attachment to others. Attachment theory advanced by John Bowlby in the early 1950s, seeks to explain how early life relations affects an individual’s emotional bonding in future Hutchison (89). The theory gives an understanding of the different personalities as relates […]

Play With a Purpose

All forms of play are important to children, since they help them to become more healthy and active in life. For that reason, both parents and educators should always view play as an essential requirement for early life development of every child. Play is all about having fun by doing what we enjoy most. Therefore, […]

Development Theories in Child Development

Introduction Development theories argue that child development is influenced by a mixture of innate biological abilities that a child has at birth and the interaction that he or she has with the environment where they grow up especially in early childhood and adolescence. Though different theories hold different views, the research paper holds the opinion […]

Theory of human change and growth

Introduction There are a number of factors that defines how human beings change as they grow old. Exposure to different environments is one of the major player to this change. Human beings like all living things begin their life as a single cell (when the male and the female gametes meet and the ovum gets […]

Comparing and Contrasting Developmental Theories

Psychologists have made tremendous progress in their attempts to explain how development occurs among human beings. Over a long period of time, developmental psychologists have been engaged in controversies in their understanding of development as either continuous or stage oriented (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2008). Those who propose that human development is discontinuous argue that it […]