Perspective for social work practice

This assignment is traveling to look at the advantages and disadvantages of sing behaviour the life span position for societal work pattern.

The chosen are of life span that this assignment is traveling to concentrate on is babyhood. This phase of development is described as Ego development and a phase of “ Trust vs. Mistrust ” and the basic strength is drive and hope.

There are many factors that contribute to a kid ‘s development. Environmental factors may hold an affect on a kid ‘s development ; a kid life in poorness tends to hold fewer chances than a kid populating with a household with wealth which can besides hold an affect on the kid ‘s development. It is besides helpful to look at the parent ‘s ( health professionals ) own development as this may hold an impact on the kid ‘s development. If there attention giver has developmental issues the kid possibly may be probably to endure from these.

It was Erickson ( 1902-1994 ) who introduced the life span theory. He organised life into eight phases, these were Infancy: Birth to 18 Calendar months, Early Childhood: 18 Calendar months to 3 Old ages, Play Age: 3 to 5 Old ages, School Age: 6 to 12 Old ages, Adolescence: 12 to 18 Old ages, Young maturity: 18 to 35, Middle Adulthood: 35 to 55 or 65, and Late Adulthood: 55 or 65 to Death.

Erikson referrers to infancy as the Oral Sensory Stage and sees this period of development the phase where the major accent is on the female parent ‘s or chief health professionals positive interaction, dependability, and loving fondness towards the kid. He believed this to be a critical portion of an baby ‘s development and without this the kid would non go through successfully through to the following phase Early Childhood and this efficaciously would do jobs for that kid subsequently on in their life.

This relationship between health professional and kid besides links to the Attachment Theory introduced by John Bowlby. It is thought that if the kid can successfully go through through the babyhood period of life with their demands being met, the kid is more likely to be able to derive trust, and this will let for them to be able to organize trust for others and make relationships positively in ulterior life. If the positive interaction, dependability and loving fondness from the attention giver is non at that place during this period of the life-span and the kid ‘s demand for this attending are non met so Erickson ‘s theory would state that the kid failed to make and see trust, the kid will stop up with feelings of misgiving and this will take to a negative affect on ulterior life experiences. Early relationships are seen to hold a critical function in a kid ‘s ulterior life. It is hence argued that a kid who does non organize this type of fond regard will miss security and will see emotional and behavioral troubles as a effect, Bowlby cited in Thompson 2008

The advantage for the societal worker being cognizant of these theories is that they can utilize these thoughts when measuring an baby and there household and it can be used as a usher to foretell the possible hereafter jobs, if any. When the societal worker is measuring the baby and household, it would be of import to seek and understand the health professional ‘s upbringing, as it is non unusual to happen that a health professional frequently parents in a manner that is familiar to so. However these theories may propose that jobs will happen in the baby ‘s ulterior life and that possible future relationships may be damaged but the societal worker demands to maintain in head the person and the variables that may let for this non go on. For illustration cultural differences, many civilizations have larger households and the attention of kids may be past around the household, a kid may hold many different people involved with them and may pass small clip with their chief health professional, and be involved with tonss of different people at the same clip. This would intend that no strong bond can be formed with merely the health professionals. This nevertheless does non intend that this baby will needfully hold troubles organizing relationships in ulterior life the theories are highly Europocentric therefore does non look at all cultural differences.

The fond regard theory has been criticised from the women’s rightist and the multicultural point of position. Bowlby has been criticised by feminist authors ( Burman 1994 for illustration ) for “ binding adult females to the place ” . Beckett 2002.

This gives adult females the feeling that if they are to go forth there kids at all during this phase of development so there kid will hold long term harm.

Mary Ainsworth designed an experimental process to mensurate the degree of fond regard experienced by babies. This experiment is called the Strange Situation. This experiment had three different displayed behavior results, insecure-avoidant, unafraid and insecure-ambivalent. Another displayed behavior was subsequently identified by Main and Solomon and this was insecure-disorganised. Crawford 2006

The first measure of the experiment was the female parent ( chief health professional ) and baby has an chance to play in a room and the female parent is watching and near to the kid. The 2nd phase a alien enters the room, the 3rd phase the female parent leaves the baby and the alien is left in the room with the baby, the 4th phase the female parent re-enters the room, the 5th phase the alien leaves the room and female parent and baby are left together, the 6th phase the female parent leaves the room and the baby is left on there ain and so the alien rejoins the baby and the 7th phase the female parent once more returns back into the room. It identified the different behavior displayed by the kid and this experiment was associating to Bowlby ‘s fond regard theory and look intoing the degree of fond regard an baby had towards their chief health professional.

Other single factor may hold affects on development. There may be major life events that the household may see which may hold a major impact on the manner the household map. For illustration with divorce and separation now being rather common, there are now a important figure of individual parent households. This can hold effects on a kid ‘s upbringing and development as modus operandi may be effected, which can do confusion and unhappiness to a kid, some kids will get by good with such a alteration, but babies evidently are younger and are less cognizant of what is traveling on around them. This could impact their development, as the two people they have the strongest attachment towards may hold separated and the kid has to set to one of them non being about them every bit frequently or in some instances non at all. The fond regard theory would propose this will hold a immense impact on a kid in ulterior life as they have “ lost ” an fond regard and hence trust is replaced by misgiving.

However this sort of state of affairs could besides hold a positive result as if there were jobs with the health professionals relationships this may hold been doing emphasis for them and this could hold effected the attention and attending that the baby is having, and if there was a hostile environment so this may hold been an uneasy and unsure ambiance for the kid that may hold cause anxiousness, and with the separation of the female parent and male parent ( health professionals ) this may hold relieved the emphasis and allowed the parents to map in a more appropriate mode.

The intercession of Social Work can assist households to accomplish ends and let them to break themselves and positively travel frontward with the aid of professionals. The cognition of theory gives the societal worker some penetration into the psychological procedure that the service user might be traveling through and gives the societal worker a footing on how to measure. Good communicating between Social Worker and health professional is of import, as this will assist place possible causes of jobs and besides may assist towards making solutions. It is besides of import for the societal worker to retrieve that their chief service user is the kid and they need to be cognizant that working with a kid of such a immature age it may go easy to over look the kid and go more involved with the health professional. When measuring a kid and household the societal worker must be confident in garnering information and may at times have to inquire inquiries that may be uncomfortable for themselves or the service user, but it is of import that these inquiries are asked as this can get down to construct a image and besides may assist to place jobs and causes of jobs. The societal worker may be signposting the household to possible services for case they may experience it to be appropriate for the health professionals to take part in some parenting categories and experience that this may let the health professionals to get the better of any jobs they may be sing. This kind of counsel can assist health professionals achieve positive alteration and this will hold a positive impact on the kid leting them to go oning developing.

The advantages of being cognizant of theory is that it allows the societal worker to place whether phases of development have been met and if non they will be able to travel on and place why they have n’t been met. When working with babies the parents are besides relevant and they should be considered. However a disadvantage would be that the theories are non traveling to be right for all single they may hold lending factors in their lives that besides have an affect on their development, it is of import for the societal worker to stay unfastened minded and non opinion and to work together with the household to place a manner frontward.


  • Social Work and Human Development: Karin Crawford
  • Human Growth and Development: Chris Beckett
  • Attachment Theory, Child Maltreatment and Family Support: David Howe, Marian Brandon, Diana Hinings and Gillian Schofield
  • The Blackwell Companion to Social Work: Third Edition
  • A Literature Review Of Child – Parent/Caregiver Attachment Theory And Cross-cultural Practices Influencing Attachment. By P.N. Reebye M.D. FRCPC, S.E. Ross M.Sc. RDN, K. Jamieson M.A. With the Assistance of Jason M. Clark B.A. ( Hons. )
  • The Social Work Companion: Neil Thompson and Sue Thompson
  • An Introduction to Social Work Theory: David Howe


  • Beckett, C ( 2002 ) Human Growth and Development. Sage Publications
  • Thompson, N ( 2008 ) The Social Work Companion. Palgrave Macmillan
  • Crawford, K ( 2006 ) Social Work and Human Development. Learning Matters LTD

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