Sociocultural and Ecological Human Developmental Theories

Various theories such as psychoanalytic, cognitive, learning, and ecological theories have been advanced to explain how humans develop and continue to develop. This paper will evaluate two major theories: a -sociocultural theory which is one of the cognitive theories and ecological theory.
The sociocultural theory was advanced by Lev Vygotsky though he died before his theory was fully developed (Shaffer, 2009). He focused on the cognitive development of children which he believed is achieved through social interactions with parents, teachers, peers, and more knowledgeable persons. Every aspect of a child’s development is guided by cultural values and skills conveyed by adults hence according to him, development is an apprenticeship (Kail amp. Cavanaugh, 2010). In this theory, language is used as a means of thinking and directing behavior. Children talk to themselves in what Vygotsky called private speech in solving their problems in their own minds. As they interact and communicate with adults and more experienced people, the language becomes sophisticated and they develop a higher understanding and start internalizing their thoughts without speaking them out.
Children learn through various ways of developing their mental capacities and learning begins at birth and continues throughout their lives. They observe the other members of the family and community and imitate their actions. They also learn by listening to the instructions given by the teacher or any other adult through scaffolding. Another method is through collaborative learning where peer groups work together and improve their understanding (KidsDevt, 2000-2010). Though children acquire skills, values, and beliefs relevant in their culture from other members of the community, they are born with few mental functions which develop as they continue to interact.

You Might Also Like