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Personality Development Theory & Presentation of Self

1. Do you think that a person's identity becomes fixed in adolescence or is our identity (our idea of who we are) something that changes and develops throughout our life? What makes you think the way you do? How does this compare to Erikson's idea of life long stages? Can people make major and dramatic changes of who they are in middle age? What sorts of events might contribute to major changes in identity in middle age? How does your observation of your own life and people you know compare with Erikson's idea of what happens in middle age versus young adulthood? What about when we form intimate relationships? Must we do that in our twenties or can that happen at other stages of our life? How does your observation of people today and their life patterns compare to Erikson's stages? What happens to people's intimate relationships (such as marriage) when they go through a major life change (such as changing jobs, being laid off, going back to school, becoming disabled, and so forth)? Do you think that we can describe the development of all adults in the U.S. today in one simple set of stages like those Erikson described? Why or why not?

2. What advantages are there to students (or at least some students) of making an entire college degree available on-line as this school has done? What advantages (in addition to the one mentioned above) are there to the colleges of using the principles of McDonaldization to develop a uniform and standardized set of distance learning courses? (Be sure to demonstrate that you know what the principles of McDonaldization are). Given your experience to the present time with distance learning what disadvantages do you see to distance learning courses compared to those based on a more traditional classroom. (For your comparison, include as distance learning not only this course but also any satellite courses, interactive TV or compressed video courses, KET or other telecourses, as well as Internet or web-based courses you've taken). What disadvantages, if any, do you see a person having who gets their college degree through distance learning? Are there any courses that you think just can't or shouldn't be taught through distance learning? Why or why not? What would you tell an employer who was concerned about whether distance learning students were acquiring the same quality of education? What do you think should be done to assure quality of education (for classroom or distance learning)? In summation, do you think that distance learning is a good way for community colleges to help students deal with role conflicts? (Compare your views to others through the class discussion board)

3. What are the main tips (do's and don'ts) for behavior, dress, and general presentation of self in an employment interview? Be as complete as you can in giving a guide for job interviews. Discuss Goffman's ideas about "presentation of self" and discuss how much of this involves playing a "role" that is quite different from how one "normally" behaves? Be specific and give examples. In the attempt to create a positive impression and get hired what sorts of things is it all right to hide or cover over? (For example, if you are bald is it okay to cover your baldness with a toupee or wig? If you were once arrested, but found not guilty do you need to reveal that? ) What things about ourselves do we have a right to keep private and not reveal to the interviewer? What types of things is it NOT okay to hide? (You should check out what the websites say about the things employers cannot legally ask about) Explain and give examples for each question. Legal issues aside what sorts of things are it morally and ethically acceptable to embellish upon and what must always be the plain "unvarnished" truth?

Solution Preview

Dear Student,
The solution below follows your request - simple and concise answers presented in a coherent narrative, albeit a little longer than your word limit for the purpose of giving more ideas on possible discussion topics. I hope that this solution helps you. Please take note of the fact however that your professor might have specific ideas regarding these concepts and you should refer to these specifics to make your answer suited to your professor's expectations when putting together your final paper.

Sincerely,
OTA 105878/Xenia Jones
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Reflecting on Erik H. Erikson's Personality Development Theory

German-American Erikson is a psychologist and psychoanalyst who developed theories of the self and of personality development. A Neo-Freudian, he studied the span of human development in the varied stages of life. He believed that these stages are characterized by a focus on hope, will, purpose, competence, trust, fidelity, love, caring, and wisdom. One of his primary studies centered on the human ego. For Erikson (1963), "Ego identity, in its subjective aspect, is the awareness of the fact that there is a self-sameness and continuity to the ego's synthesizing methods and a continuity of one's meaning for others". Using his perspective, I tried to reflect on my life objectively. I conclude that in a way, society as an entity can be explained through Erikson's neo-Freudian eyes. His study, for example of the Lakota Indians as a singular social group with a specific culture allowed him to bridge his stages of development with the unique structure of the Lakota tribe. Each culture follows a certain structure imposing certain mores, belief systems and codes in order to protect the integrity and development of the group. As each member goes through the varied stages of development as Erikson proposed, they are also heavily influenced by the structure of society and in return, through their personalities and their stage of development, they act in a way befitting them with their actions affecting the group they belong to. Whether positive or negative, the social impact of an individual in the social group he belongs to accounts for the state of things within the social group. Compared to the theory of long stages development, I think that Erikson's idea reflects social truth more being that our identities are always fluid as we are influenced and are influencing the social dynamics we are a part of. Whatever our stage of life, when catalysts strike, we are bound to occupy a new stage, a new space. If identity is influenced by culture and social situation as well as by psychosocial development, then we cannot point to one constant singular identity. In real life we follow structured stages because of our increased capacities and maturity. This ...

Solution Summary

The solution provides simple and concise answers presented in a coherent narrative in an APA-format essay that corresponds to and discusses topics, concepts and questions presented in the original posting (see problem). The word count comes up to 1,639 and the essay is divided into the following 3 parts: Erik H. Erikson's Personality Development Theory, Online Studies & Erving Goffman's Presentation of Self. The word version of the solution is attached for easy printing. References are also listed for easy expansion & further research.

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