Psychology and Cognitive Sciences

Start Your Free Trial

Explain the psychological importance of understanding one's  development as an infant, child, or adolescent. Explain the psychological importance of understanding one's  development as an infant,...

Explain the psychological importance of understanding one's  development as an infant, child, or adolescent.

Explain the psychological importance of understanding one's  development as an infant, child, or adolescent.

Expert Answers info

clairewait eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2010

write2,328 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and Science

I do not necessarily think it is imperative that a parent fully understands the how's and why's of child-development, as long as the parent is willing to pick a path of parenting and attempt to stick with it, or, through trial-and error, discover what works for the family and the child.  In the end, children do not necessarily know what is best for them.  As long as they feel emotionally and physically secure, at the end of the day (or life) most agree that whether a child is raised by psychologically educated parents or not, he or she can certainly be healthy and successful one day.

As far as understanding child development, it is helpful (especially for parents) in embracing the unknown and building confidence when certain parenting techniques do not necessarily have immediate effects.  Obviously understanding child development is necessary in the educational world, for building age-appropriate lessons and attempting to reach a large number of children at once.  But for parents who are mostly one-on-one with their own children, I think knowledge of child development can be helpful, but certainly isn't necessary.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Karen P.L. Hardison eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write5,918 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and Business

The other side of this is "understanding one's development," as in a grown person understanding their previous growth and development. Any time we gain knowledge into our past experience, light is shed upon our present actions, motivations and attitudes. Since this is so, "understanding one's development" has significant psychological importance so that one might feel more comfortable with one's experience in life and so that one might make the most and best of oneself.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

litteacher8 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2008

write15,968 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

It almost sounds like you are asking about your own development. As adults, I think it is helpful to look back at our lives and consider how we grew up. Sometimes there are clues to our current behaviors in our development as children. Obviously, he environment in which we were raised has a lot to do with it. To a certain extent, we also might be able to predict the development of our own children based on ours.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

brettd eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write4,576 answers

starTop subjects are History, Social Sciences, and Literature

Understanding one's own development at any stage, as well as those you may work with, teach or parent, is of course key to living and working with them.  For one thing, it explains behavior, and recognizing how development impacts those patterns of behavior might make you a better parent, teacher, manager or person.  Certainly for any parent, having the awareness to know what stage your child is at is very helpful in appropriately and effectively raising them. Understanding our own development, even as we reach middle and upper age, helps us to cope with the physical and mental challenges of getting older.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

wannam eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write1,438 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and Science

I agree that this is an important question for parents. It is also an important question for us as individuals. It is helpful to realize what portions of our nature or personality came about because of how we were raised. Somethings might need to be overcome or redirected. For instance, a child raised with bias and prejudice against a certain group of people may find as an adult that they no longer like this aspect of themselves. It would be helpful to understand how and why these feelings took root during their childhood. This could help them overcome the unwanted bias. A hard look at various points in our upbringing can also help us understand ourselves a little better. We might understand certain aspects of our psychological makeup that can only be explained by such an examination of our past (and an understanding of how that past effected us).

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Lorraine Caplan eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2008

write2,422 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and Law and Politics

I have always been fond of the quotation, "The child is father of the man" (Wordsworth).  While the nature versus nurture battle, a false dichotomy if there ever was one, rages on,  whatever each of us brings to life genetically, we...

(The entire section contains 8 answers and 1,236 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

accessteacher eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write13,728 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and History

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Ashley Kannan eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write16,848 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

check Approved by eNotes Editorial


danielledafgard | Student

Oh my Gosh, this is amazing... never heard those theories before.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial