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Human Developmental Theories

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A comparison similarities and differences of the major components of each human development theories; such-as the Piaget's Theory of Cognitive Development; Super and Harkness' Developmental Niche; John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworthâ??s Integrated Attachment Theory; Erik Eriksonâ??s Psycho-Social Theory; Sigmund Freud's Psychodynamic Theory; Albert Bandura's Social Learning Theory; Lev Vygotsky's Cognitive-Mediation Theory; and John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth's Integrated Attachment Theory.

Explain how each theory explains cultural influences on human development and include specific examples.

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Piaget's theory of cognitive development outlines four stages: sensori-motor, pre-operational, concrete operational, and formal operational.

According to Piaget the sensori-motor stage encompasses children ages birth to two. At this stage of cognitive development children begin to recognize their ability to effect change in their environment. For example, a child may learn that if she touches a toy it will light-up and make noise. She begins to act with intent to elicit reaction around her. In this stage children are completely egocentric; they are only able to think of their own needs and wants, and cannot understand another individual's point of view.

The pre-operational stage represents a period of language acquisition and object representation. Piaget suggests that children ages two to seven years old are in this stage, and are just learning to associate images and words, recognizing patterns, and classifying objects based on a single feature. Children's thinking in this stage is still primarily egocentric, and they are able to understand that certain behaviors are wrong, but cannot understand why they are wrong. For example, a child might say that lying is wrong because they are "mean words".

During the concrete operational stage children's logical thinking becomes more sophisticated. They are able to order objects based on multiple features, and learn conservation of number, mass, and weight. At this point in their development children begin to ...

Solution Summary

The solution provides information on the similarities and differences between major developmental theories (see above to identify the theories included). Their relevance in terms of explaining cultural differences between human societies is also discussed.