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The Theories of Sigmund Freud and Jean Piaget

However, from this type of work Freud was able to construct a system of psychoanalysis that demonstrates how mental energies could create physical symptoms. Freud began to believe that sexual impulses also greatly affected neurotic patients and began developing his psychosexual stages (oral, anal, etc.) of development in the infant and child. Freud, like Piaget, was greatly criticized for arguing that the years from birth to five are ones in which the adult personality is greatly shaped.

The stages of psychosexual development in Freud are:

Oral Stage (0-1) Mouth Weaning (from breast

Anal Stage (1-3) Anus Toilet training

Phallic (3-6) Genitals Identifying with adult

(masturbating) role models: coping

Latency (6-12) None Expanding social

Genital (Puberty on) Genitals Establishing intimate

(being sexually intimate) relationships; contribu-

Piaget tried to express that children play a much more active and larger role in the shaping of their own development than ever before thought possible. He and his wife brought a wide knowledge of developmental psychology with them to the table when they kept (as Darwin had advised) diaries of their own child’s development. From these observations and others like it, Piaget developed his cognitive development theory which he believed developed from birth to adolescence and beyond through four primary stages:

The Sensorimotor Stage: The period of infancy from birth to 18 to 24 months. During this period the infants’ knowledge is in the form of action schemes. They know how to act on objects.

The Preoperational Stage: From two to seven or eight years of age; children have mental representations of objects, independent of actions on the objects. It is during this period that children first have the cognitive structures necessary for knowing that objects exist even when they are not within sight, touch, or hearing.

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The Theories of Sigmund Freud and Jean Piaget. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 11:26, August 20, 2017, from
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