The two theoretical perspectives or concepts on development that will be analyzed and synthesized in this essay are Erikson’s psychosocial theory of development, and Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. The psychosocial perspective was proposed by Erik Erikson, a developmental psychologist (Friedman & Schustack, 2016). He believed that an individual’s personality and physical growth were heavily influenced by the environment around them. His theory consists of eight stages throughout life in which each stage has its own unique set of challenges to overcome for successful development (Dixon et al., 2018). According to Erikson, individuals must progress through these stages in order from infancy to old age; if they don’t complete all eight tasks successfully then it could lead to psychological issues later in life (Eisenberg & Fabes, 2020). An example is during the trust versus mistrust stage from birth to 18 months; infants learn whether their environment is safe and secure or dangerous and unpredictable. This can have lasting effects into adulthood as feelings about what people can expect from others may be either positive or negative depending on how this stage was navigated during infancy (Reed-Kane et al., 2020).
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