Developmental Periods


Jennifer Coble

PSY – 357

Professor Hale


PSY-357 – Lifespan Development

Developmental Periods

Directions: For each developmental period, discuss the physical, socioemotional, and cognitive developmental theories, and identify the theorists. Include any concerns/issues that might arise during each developmental period.

While APA style is not required for the body of this assignment, solid academic writing is expected, and documentation of sources should be presented using APA formatting guidelines. Each description should be a minimum of 50 words with two to three outside references, not including your textbook, for each developmental period. You will add information to the chart as you study and research each developmental group throughout the course.

You will summarize your information each week in discussion questions. Plan your time accordingly for the DQ deadline. The entire chart, filled out completely, is due to your instructor at the end of Topic 8. You will not be required to submit this assignment to Turnitin.

Physical Development Socioemotional Development Cognitive Development Concerns or Issues
Prenatal and Infancy At conception, development begins where genetic and experimental factors are major factors. This development starts at zygotic stage, after two weeks becomes an embryo. It takes 8 weeks where all vital organs and body parts develop fully. From birth, its weight increases at faster rate. By the end of first one month, neck and head are flexed but cannot support head. After five months, the infant is able to sit, roll without support. Crawling begins after six months and some stand by holding on support. At nine, 10 or 12 months, the child is able to gain balance, and take short unstable steps. At this time, infants spend more time observing objects than human beings. Curiosity develops but security is of more concern. The desire to be loved develops from any person and therefore enjoys being kissed, cuddled or held. The infant doesn’t not want to be alone. Being around the infant develops its social development (Miller, 2018). Piaget theory indicates that infants interaction is reflective and through involuntary reactions. The information about the environment is learned through senses. This is evident when the infants cries as soon as it is given birth. The reflexive nature is displayed by suckling breast or bottle and repeat actions is seen when the child suckles thumb for comfort (Nicolopoulou, 2012). This stage is very important since it will dictate how the adult life will be. Personal behavior and personality character is dependent on how the infant is handled.
Early Childhood According to Erik Erikson, this form the first stage called trust vs. mistrust. It is between birth and one year. Child needs assurance that the world is safe, therefore needs to be handled with care and love. If handled otherwise, the child will not feel comfortable and develop mistrust (Miller, 2018). Child begins to differentiate the mother from other people. The bond between the mother and the child increases, as the child realizes that it is only form the mother where breast milk is found. The child will form an attachment with the caregiver. Eh child begins to understand the emotion of the caregiver as well as the emotions (Moss & Lecompte, 2015). At this moment, the child’s cognitive skills are developed, where language skills are developed. Child learns to speak, although incoherently. This is aided by the caregiver, as the child tries to imitate. The child recalls and creates images in his mind. The child begins to identify different individuals by sight. Overall behavior of the child is influenced here. This is the center stage of cognitive development ability.
Middle and Late Childhood Genitals is the main focus, where a child longs for opposite sex parent and develop jealousy over same sex parent. Industry and inferiority are two things that matters. Success is their central focus. If the child’s work is unrewarded, then he feels unrewarded than leads to general feeling of inferiority. A child wants to show off skills earned while cooperating with other peers. At this time, child begins to go to school, their social world enlarges. Paying attention to those around is developed. This leads to forming of friendship. The choice of friendship is basically influenced by proximity. Outside the family unit friendship is developed (“How Do Children Develop in Middle Childhood?”, 2018). Childs begins to understand the difference between perception and the presence of other views. Their personal views and judgmental skills develop and often take the view of parents or the closest person. Child understands that understandings can be interpreted differently by different people on the same issue. Children tend to think practically and struggles to think hypothetically. The relationship of a person will be influenced either positively or negatively, depending on how this situation is handled, often influenced by the environment.
Adolescence The Latency Stage, where intellectual and motor skills takes place but sexual as per Freud’s stages of psychosexual development(Miller, 2018). The child begins to see their body differences, as the body changes becomes evident. This makes the child to retreat, and becomes less social at the beginning. Albert Bandura theory indicates that their behavior is influenced by social and environmental factors. Jean Piaget theory alludes that their cognitive skills develop, where thinking is based in a logical and abstract way. According to Paget, this is the last stage at which child’s cognitive skills are developed. Their hypothetical and abstract thinking is developed. At this time, solving problems through thinking is developed. This is evident when the teen is playing games or performing a math quiz in school. Thinking outside the box and applying learned skills to solve the problem is evident (Miller, 2018). This stage needs a lot of attention from the caregivers. As the person is faced with a lot of problems and uncertainty, it needs direction and protection from an adult that all will be well. more attention and moral support is paramount
Early Adulthood The person focuses on intimate personal relationship while still maintaining personal sense of identity, as per Erikson. Intimacy and isolation is what early adults face. A person battles between marrying and not marrying, often influenced by societal pressures. Friendship development starts, with the aim of establishing long term relationship. Erickson theory states that at this stage, the struggle is purely spouse related activities. Internal conflicts increases, and the person tries to find the right choice among many choices in life. Ability to solve one problem will lead to maturity and ability to handle next life’s hurdle comfortably. Cognitive development is therefore influenced by this stage, going forward. Career and love live is hard, and if all doesn’t not go well, it will make a person to lose morale and give up in life.
Middle Adulthood A person focuses on either personal development and becomes overly self-indulgent or focus in positive development for humanity. The central focus is sense of achievement where most people refer to middle life crisis. Individuals seeks to apply knowledge learnt. Their views and perspectives broadens, as many problems need to be solved. Acquiring of new knowledge is limited, as pressure to show results increases.
Late Adulthood At this stage, a person can be either driven by ego integrity or despair. Some will feel unsatisfied and therefore fear that they will die before achieving anything tangible. Despair and hopelessness fill their hearts, while others show signs of complete satisfaction and offers advice to people instructing them on the way to go. Erikson’s theory of integrity Vs. despair where an individual reviews owns life experience. The choice of social network narrows, often choosing those whom they thin they had benefited from their relationships in the past, and disregard those who had failed them. This is called socioemotional selectivity theory. Self-esteem declines because of many factors associated with old age, e.g., declining health or even loss of loved one. At this stage, their cognitive development declines but most of them specializes to a finer topic, especially driven by interest, rather than money. Older person needs to be given full attention, just like at the infancy stage. A person needs to be appreciated and given space to do what he or she likes.
End of Life


How Do Children Develop in Middle Childhood?. (2018). Verywell Mind. Retrieved 26 March 2018, from

Miller, P. Theories of developmental psychology.

Moss, E., & Lecompte, V. (2015). Attachment and Socioemotional Problems in Middle Childhood. New Directions For Child And Adolescent Development2015(148), 63-76.

Nicolopoulou, A. (2018). Play, Cognitive Development, and the Social World: Piaget, Vygotsky, and Beyond. Human Development36(1), 1-23.

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