Instructions How to Write

Theory Paper Objectives


The purpose of this assignment is to gain a greater in-depth understanding of at least one child/adolescent development theory. Ideally, you will gain an understanding of how theories are interconnected and layered within a greater theoretical framework. You will also enhance your ability to integrate theories with applied situations working with children and adolescents.

• Section 1 – Describe an important child/ adolescent development theorist. Briefly describe the theorist that you have selected. Define key terms, describe and define major assumptions of the theory.
• Section 2 – Explain what aspect of development the theorist focuses on. Explain what aspect(s) of development this theorist focuses on (social, emotional, cognitive, etc.)? Which general theoretical viewpoint would you categorize this theorist (e.g., psychoanalytic, cognitive, learning, social learning, contextual/systems, etc.) - why? What are the pros and cons of this theorist?
• Section 3 – Describe how this theory applies to working in the field of child/adolescent development. Give an example of how this theory can be used to understand development (be specific with examples). How do theories help practitioners enhance their ability to interact with children and adolescents? Which topics of child/adolescent development (e.g., conflict resolution, academic achievement, media, social skills, sports participation, disabilities) can or do use this theory to explain behavior, attitudes, or change?
• Section 4 –Evaluate the applicability of the theory to field of interest and Summarize your paper. Use critical thinking skills to evaluate the theory. How well does your theory apply to the field? What is the theory not taking into consideration? Create a well-rounded summary of your paper, touching on key points of the theory that apply to your field of interest.

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