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Stages of PsychosocialDevelopment

Psychosocial Development in Preschool, Middle Childhood, andAdolescence

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  • erik erikson
  • psychosocial development

Psychosocial Stage 3 - Initiative vs. Guilt

  • During the preschool years, children begin to assert their power and control over the world through directing play and other social interactions.

  • Children who are successful at this stage feel capable and able to lead others. Those who fail to acquire these skills are left with a sense of guilt, self-doubt, and lack of initiative.3

Psychosocial Stage 4 - Industry vs. Inferiority

  • This stage covers the early school years from approximately age 5 to 11.

  • Through social interactions, children begin to develop a sense of pride in their accomplishments and abilities.

  • Children who are encouraged and commended by parents and teachers develop a feeling of competence and belief in their skills. Those who receive little or no encouragement from parents, teachers, or peers will doubt their abilities to be successful.

Psychosocial Stage 5 - Identity vs. Confusion

  • During adolescence, children explore their independence and develop a sense of self.

  • Those who receive proper encouragement and reinforcement through personal exploration will emerge from this stage with a strong sense of self and a feeling of independence and control. Those who remain unsure of their beliefs and desires will feel insecure and confused about themselves and the future.
Next: Young Adulthood, Middle Age, and Old Age - Erikson's Theory of Psychosocial Development
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