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A Scope : About Eight Stages of Erikson Psychosocial Theory Development

Updated on November 4, 2013
trust via morgueFile
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Psychosocial is a term derived from the two words, the “psychological” means on the root “psycho” relating to the mind, brain, personality, etc. and the “social” means the external relationships and environment.

Eventually, psychosocial has a relations or similarity to the word bio-psychosocial which “bio” refers to life as in biological. Moreover, Erikson’s theory was truly influenced by Sigmund Freud Theory. Erikson’s extended the theory and incorporated cultural and social aspects.

His ideas was under printed which develop over time through the aid of “psychosocial model”. This model is simple and well-designed. The theory was based accordingly and serve as a basis for broad or complex discussion and analysis of personality and behavior and also for understanding and facilitating personal development, whether within ourselves or in others. It is also a very powerful model because it can be relate and see in real life as what we observe recently, it serve as an instrument for us to understand and explain how personality and behavior develop in people.

Also, there are various terms used as we tackle this theory, for example Erikson’s bio-psychosocial or bio-psychosocial.

Do you have heard this theory during your college?

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Epigenetic principle- this is a principle which says that we developed through unfolding of our personalities. This theory developed how personality was found and believe that the earlier stages served as a foundation for the later stages.

In this theory, there are eight stages and every stage involves a psychosocial crisis with two opposing emotional faces. Erikson described these terms as a contrary dispositions. For example trust for the positive and mistrust for the negative.

If a stage is managed well, we can carry away or it will result to certain virtue or psychological strength which helps us to overcome our weaknesses as we tackle the different stages of our life. And If we don’t manage it so well therefore we may fall or practice and develop maladaptive and malignancies. When we say maladaptive is not quite as bad and involves too much of the positive and too little negative. While malignancies or malignancy is involves too little of the positive and too much of the negative aspect of the task.

According to Erikson, he was keen to point out that the transition between stages is ‘over lapping’. Also, he emphasized the significance of mutuality and generativity. Mutuality reflects the effects of generations on each other people affect through the experience from the others as we pass through the different crisis stages. Generativity, says that it reflect the significant relationship between adults and best interests of children.

Stage 1 - The Infancy

The virtue of this stage is hope. This is the strong belief that even though we know the things are not going well. We still believe that it will result to a good outcome and will work well in the end.

Stage 2 - Early childhood from about 18 months to 3 or 4 years

The virtue of this stage is will power determination. If you get the proper and positive of autonomy and shame and doubt, for sure you will develop the virtue of will power of determination.

Stage 3 - Early childhood from three or four to five or six years old

The virtue of this stage, if maintain and manage well, you have a virtue of courage. This is the capacity for action despite a clear understanding of your limitations and past feelings.

Stage 4 - School age stage form about six to twelve years old

If this stage well managed and develop right balance of industry and inferiority that is mostly industry with just a touch of inferiority, it keep us something humble. And that we possess the virtue of competency.

Stage 5 - Adolescence

If this stage is well managed and if you successfully negotiate this stage, you will have virtue of fidelity. When we say fidelity, it is your loyalty and your ability to live by societies standards of their imperfections, incompetency and inconsistencies. You are ready to accept who you really are and what the society is. Also, fidelity means you have found a place that will allow you to contribute.

Stage 6 - Adulthood which lasts from about 18 to 30 years old

If you successfully negotiate and well balance this stage you will carry the virtue or psychosocial strength called love. It simply means that we are able to put aside difference and antagonisms through “mutual devotion”. It is not only the love for marriage or lovers, but also love for friend and to other people around you.

Stage 7 - Middle childhood stage

If this stage is well balance and negotiate, you will have the virtue of caring that you will carry to the rest of your life.

Stage 8 - Late childhood or maturity or old age, 60 years old

If this stage is well managed, you have a virtue of wisdom. A person must not be somewhat truly wise not by words but by their simple and gentle approach to his life.


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    • KenDeanAgudo profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth C Agudo 

      5 years ago from Tiwi, Philippines

      I am not mad Anna , I am happy you had the time reading this =) thank you.

    • Anna Marie Bowman profile image

      Anna Marie Bowman 

      5 years ago from Florida

      This is a great source of information!! It takes me back to Psych class. I did notice a few grammatical issues, but nothing major. Don't be mad, I just want to help!

    • KenDeanAgudo profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth C Agudo 

      5 years ago from Tiwi, Philippines

      Hehe I told you jemuelO we have the same interest =)

    • jemuelO profile image


      5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      This hub is really amazing! The Eight Stages of Erikson’s Psycho-Social Theory was well-explained in a simple yet understandable manner.

      We really have the same thoughts, I am also inclined with the study of human behavior and mental processes (Psychology). Thank you so much!


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