Essay on Bronfenbrenner 's Ecological Theory Of Human Development

Essay on Bronfenbrenner 's Ecological Theory Of Human Development

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Human development issues have remained critical in understanding how and why people behave the way they do. Several human development theories exist to explain human development from birth through to death. Some of these have focused on the psychological aspects of human development while others on the cognitive aspect (Piaget, 1971; Lerner, 2001; Swick and Williams, 2006). Other human development theories have also focused on the social and environmental aspects (Bronfenbrenner & Bronfenbrenner, 2009; Swick, 2004). This current essay examines one of the major social theories relating to child development. The theory to be examined is the Bronfenbrenner’s ecological theory of human development. The essay will further examine the applicability of the Bronfenbrenner’s ecological theory to my personal development, growing up as a child between the ages of 4 years and 12 years. In the first instance, the essay will focus on explaining the – Bronfenbrenner’s theory including the four types of systems described by the theory. Subsequently, the essay will examine how these systems apply to my life in relation to the social systems in which I grew in South Sudan in Africa. It will be seen that the Bronfenbrenner’s ecological theory provides a valid context for understanding how the development of children is greatly shaped environmental, societal and situational circumstances.

The Bronfenbrenner’s ecological theory examined
The Bronfebrenner’s ecological systems theory was propounded in (1917, 2005). The theory assumes that child development occurs in very difficult and complex system of relationships which are affected by many levels of the surrounding environment (Berk, 20011). As noted by Swick and Williams (2006), the Bronfenbre...

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...embers had made it to the Refugee camp. Moving from Sudan into the safety of the refugee camp in Kenya would have been an example of Bronfenbrenner’s fifth system.
Bronfenbrenner’s five ecologies described how a child moves from a closed world of family and caregivers, to a wide world where they are a citizen. The nature versus nurture argument would apply as the child lives in the world where nature can affect it, and the humans nurture the child and care for it and protect it from nature or teach the child to live with nature. Piaget also argues nature vs nurture is important. Harkness and Super (1994) have applied Bronfenbrenner’s ecologies to advances in health services in underdeveloped countries to assist household understand how their actions, and outside stressors affect the health and well-being of the child and all members of the household.

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