compare Bronfenbrenner and Erikson
Lifespan Developments Theories offer explanations of how the individual changes and develops throughout their lifetime. While this objective is constant, the focus of these theories vary. Erikson’s Psychosocial Development Theory adopts an intrapersonal focus, outlining nine age related stages of the life cycle while Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological Stage Theory focuses on five socio-cultural stages within which the individual interacts, interpersonally, over time. This essay will focus on both these theories, their implications in the world of adult education, particularly from the perspective of experience within two South Kerry Adult Education Centres and finally the areas where these theories may concur and contrast.
Erik Erikson was a
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Stating that it should be noted that often ‘circumstances may place the dystonic in a more dominant position’ (Erikson E.H. & Erikson J. 1997 p. 106). She continues that old age is ‘such a circumstance’. For this reason, in her account of the ninth stage she places the dystonic first i.e. ‘Despair and Disgust vs. Integrity: Wisdom’ (Erikson E.H. & Erikson J. 1997, p.106) and recounts a revisiting of all the stages, this time with different virtues emerging (see chart below), ideally culminating in a state of ‘gerotranscendence’. Lars Tornstam defines gerotranscendence as a shift in perspective ‘from a materialistic and rational vision to a more cosmic and transcendence one, normally followed by an increase in life satisfaction’ (Tornstam cited Erikson E.H. & Erikson J. 1997, p.123).
Erikson’s theory highlights the need to provide age appropriate activities for the students. Also, within the field of Youthreach and VTOS programmes, particular attention might be given to stimulating identity exploration in adolescents. For example, within the Fetac Personal and Interpersonal Skills Module, helping the student explore their strengths, aptitudes, learning styles, personality