Adult Development

Essay: Adult development with reference to Roger Gould’s theory.

"The challenge of adapting to change throughout the life cycle 
provides us with the opportunity to refine our critical thinking
and achieve our full adult potential."                     (Roger Gould MD)

Development or to be more accurate the likelihood for development occurs continuously throughout a person’s life spend. Some would argue and say that there are definite developmental stages in adulthood and that the developmental processes during adulthood differ from the developmental processes that occur during childhood and adolescence. In the following paragraphs we will have a look at adult development according to Roger Gould as well as the seasons of a life and the systems of development.

Gould (1978) states the following. “As we grow and change, we take steps away from childhood and toward adulthood, steps such as marriage, work, consciously developing a talent or buying a home. With each step, the unfinished business of childhood intrudes, disturbing our emotions and requiring psychological work. With this in mind, adults may now view their disturbed feelings at particular periods as a possible sign of progress, as part of their attempted movement toward a fuller adult life.”

Gould is a contemporary author who suggested seven defined periods around specific themes. These phases have some affinities with Levinson’s but appear more focused and precise. Roger Gould used two studies to develop his stages of adult development and produced the seven stages of adult development (Snyman, 2013). In these two studies he did the one on psychiatric out patients and the second on a questionnaire basis completed by non-patients (Snyman, 2013). Gould had a more cognitive focus and had a great interest in the individual person’s ideas, assumptions and worldviews during these different stages of adulthood. Gould used both males and females in his studies.

From Ericson’s point of view...