Chapter 2: Theories of Development

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31 Cards. Created by Layna ().
-what theories do -grand theories -newer theories -what theories contribute


provides a framework of ideas that permits a cohesive view of development, produces new hypotheses to test, generates discoveries, and offers practical guidance.

Grand Theories

-psychoanalytic theories -cognitive theories -behaviorism

Emergent theories

-sociocultural -epigenetic

  • which may be the comprehensives theories of tomorrow.

Developmental Theory

is a systematic statement of principles and generalizations that provides a coherent framework for understanding how and why people change as they grow older.


which offer a comprehensive view of development

Psychonalytic theories

interprets human development in terms of inner drives and motives, many of which are irrational and unconscious

The Oral stage

pleasure from the mouth during infancy

The anal stage

Pleasure form the anus during early childhood

The phallic stage

pleasure from the genitalia later in the preschool years

Sexual Latency

the adolescent enters the fourth stage, the genital stage, which last throughout adulthood.


is the process of learning

Classical conditioning/ respondent conditioning

involves learning by association: The organism comes to associate a neutral stimulus with a meaningful one.

Operant conditioning/instrumental conditioning

proposed by BF skinner, the individual learns that a particular behavior produces a particular consequence.


is any consequence that follows a behavior and makes the person or animal likely to repeat that behavior.

Social learning theory

emphasizes the way in which people learn new behaviors by observing and imitating, or modeling, the behavior of other people they consider admirable, powerful, nurturing, or similar.

Cognitive theory

focuses on the structure and development of the individuals thought processes and their effect on his or hers attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors.

Jean Piaget: cognitive development

-sensorimotor -preoperational -concrete operational -formal operational

Cognitive equilibrium

a state of mental balance achieved through the development of mental concepts that explain his of her experiences.

Cognitive disequilidrium

a state of imbalance

Sociocultural theory

seeks to explain human development in terms of the guidance, support, and structure provided by cultures and societies.