Speech Therapist and Child Development
Although all psychologists agree that people change over time, they disagree considerably over how to conceptualize those changes. One group sees us as changing gradually with age,; the other school or thought sees people as going through a series of abrupt changes from one stage to the next. Those who see gradual changes generally lean more toward a “molding” view, by which they interpret behavior as gradually changing, mostly because of increasing experience. Those who see stages in development typically lean toward a view in which behavior “unfolds” over time, largely due to biological maturation. Stage theorists believe that the changes occurring from one stage to the next make children qualitatively different (in “kind”) rather then quantitatively different (in “amount”) from how they were at a previous stage. When a child learns to use simple words to express him/herself, for example, she has changed qualitatively; that is, she/he has become different from the kind of child she was when she could not use language. This qualitative change opens up new experiences and possibilities. Although stage theorists believe that changes take pace qualitatively, they also believe their are changes that occur quantitatively during each stage. An example of this would be, once a child learns a few simple words, she/he will progress for awhile by learning more simple words before the next process of speech occurs which would combining words syntactically.
As a speech therapist, or any therapist for that matter, it is crucial to understand different levels and theories of stage development. We will be looking at Stage theories and development of babies, to children, to adolescent to adult in the up and coming blogs.