• Introduction Introduction
  • Prenatal Development Prenatal Development
  • Infant Development Infant Development
  • Harlow's Monkeys Harlow's Monkeys
  • Assimilation and Accommodation Assimilation and Accommodation
  • Piaget's Stages of Cognitive Development Piaget's Stages of Cognitive Development
  • Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Development Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Development
  • Parenting Styles Parenting Styles
  • Erikson's Stages of Identity Formation Erikson's Stages of Identity Formation

Lifespan Theories

Overview

Developmental stage theories are theories that divide child development into distinct stages which are characterized by qualitative differences in behaviour.
There are a number of different views about the way in which psychological and physical development proceed throughout the life span. In addition to individual differences in development, developmental psychologists generally agree that development occurs in an orderly way and in different areas simultaneously.
One of the major controversies in developmental psychology centres whether development is continuous or discontinuous.
Those psychologists who support the continuous view of development suggest that development involves gradual and ongoing changes throughout the life span, with behaviour in the earlier stages of development providing the basis of skills and abilities required for the next stages.
Not all psychologists, however, agree that development is a continuous process. Some view development as a discontinuous process.

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Sigmund Freud

Jean Piaget

Erik Erikson

Abraham Maslow

Lawrence Kohlberg

Lev Vygotsky