Saturday, 4 March 2017

Key Terms: Personality, Psycho-social, Psycho-sexual, Identity

Key Terms used by Erik Erikson:


It is the set of characteristics that we typically manifest in our interactions with others. It includes all the abilities, predispositions, habits, and other qualities that make each of us different.
It pertains to events or behaviors that relate to the social aspects of development. Erikson’s theory is psycho-social; it deals with the resolution of social crises and the development of social competencies.
A term used to describe psychological phenomena based on sexuality. Freud’s theories are psycho-sexual because they attribute development to sexually based forces and motives.


In Erikson’s theory, “identity” is a term closely related to self. Identity refers to the individual’s self-definition, a sort of personal sense of who and what one is. To achieve identity is to arrive at a clear notion of who one is. One of the important tasks of adolescence is to select and develop a strong sense of identity.


The concept that an individual has of himself or herself. Notions of the self are often closely allied with individual’s beliefs about how others perceive them.

Identity diffusion: 

An expression for a stage in early adolescence. During this stage, the adolescent has a vague and changing sense of identity with no firm vocational commitment and an ambiguous belief system.


Marcia’s term for the adoption of a ready-made identity.


Erikson’s term for the social functioning of the hiatus between childhood and adulthood. In Marcia’s description, moratorium individuals are those who have not yet made a commitment and who are in a state of crisis (conflict) as they examine and experiment with various identities.

Identity achieved: 

Marcia’s term for individuals who have experienced a crisis and made a commitment, thus achieving a sense of identity.