• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

compare and contrast two theories of language development

Extracts from this document...


Compare and contrast two theories of language development "Language is the main way in which human beings communicate." (Beaver, M et Al. 2001. p.139). It is used in different ways to socialise and express a persons needs. There are four main theories of language development but I will explore those of Noam Chomsky and B F Skinner. In the 1960's Chomsky explored the idea that "language development is innate and genetically predetermined." (Bruce, T and Meggitt, C. 2005. p.113). He believed that children are born with the necessary physical and intellectual abilities to acquire language, and therefore are able to invent new words and sentences that they have not previously heard. He suggests children learn to talk through their Language Acquisition Device (LAD). He suggests this structure consists of speech-producing mechanisms, the ability to understand, and parts of the brain. ...read more.


(Tassoni, P. 2006. p.423). Skinner's approach is a behaviourist approach- believing that children learn from other children and adults' behaviour. These two theories are contrasting as one suggests that language development is through nature, and the other through nurture. In short it is either developed through what we get at birth, or how we are brought up. It is suggested that a child learns language through aspects, nature and nurture, as "there is some genetic sensitivity to language, but that children's experiences after birth are very important in their development of language." (Beaver, M et Al. 2001. p.149). Chomsky's theory is commonly acknowledged as it is comprehensive and explains why all babies' language development follows a pattern, unlike Skinner's theory. If Skinner's nurture approach is accurate then each child's language development should vary according to the amount of reinforcement and praise they are given. ...read more.


Also when a child is struggling to read a word, they are encouraged to sound the letters out to help them say the whole word. As this is something the children are familiar with and is reinforced often, most will sound the letters out themselves to try and work out what the word says. They have learnt to do this through reinforcement, and through praise from being told when they are doing well. Parents or carers can reinforce and encourage language through the acknowledgment of spoken praise and eye contact. This helps children gain confidence in what they are saying and children who are actively encouraged to speak will acquire more words and sounds naturally. When I did a speaking and listening activity with some reception children they showed that at the end of the activity they had recalled some of the basic information that they had told me and were able to repeat this to the class teacher. Through repetition and reinforcement they had been able to remember and recall information when asked. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Developmental Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

3 star(s)

This essay makes an attempt to answer the question and to some extent succeeds. It is somewhat brief in depth however so the opportunity to demonstrate a good academic understanding of the issues is reduced to little over one page. There is room for more AO2 especially developing the points made by the writer and comparing as well as contrasting the theories.

Marked by teacher Stephanie Porras 26/03/2013

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Developmental Psychology essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    What have been the major challenges to Piaget's theory of cognitive development? What aspects ...

    4 star(s)

    Vygotsky's theory has also influenced education through concepts and techniques such as assisted discovery, peer collaboration, reciprocal teaching, and cooperative learning. A new Vygotsky-inspired educational approach transforms classrooms into communities of learners, where no distinction is made between adult and child contributions; all collaborate and develop.

  2. Human Growth and Development

    Like Freud there are many who comment on the early stages of development, including Anna Freud; Jean Piaget, Erik Erikson and Melanie Klein. Melanie Klein first became interested in psychoanalysis after reading Freud's book "On Dreams" and began her work with children analysing her own children by developing play techniques which led to her development of play therapy.

  1. Using studies from the list below, answer the questions which follow: Rosenhan (sane in ...

    They also found an imbalance if activity between the 2 hemispheres in 3 other subcortical structures. In the amygdale and the hippocampus, compared to the controls, the NGRIs had less activity in the left side and more activity in the right side.

  2. Compare and Contrast The Cognitive Developmental and Social Learning Theories Of Moral Development

    This fact was ceased upon by Gilligan (1982) who stated that woman have different orientations towards justice and responsibility, making the idea of moral universalism nonsensical. Though like Kohlberg, Bandura also suffers from comments on the validity of his theories due his experimental techniques.

  1. Nature - Nurture Debate

    This relates to the behavioural approach within psychology. Thos covers areas such as learning, environment, modelling and conditioning. Research has been conducted into these areas in order to prove the greater influence of nurture. Gender roles can be seen as appearing through nurture due to social learning theory as proposed by Bandura.

  2. Compare, Contrast and Evaluate the Nativist and Empiricist Views of Infant Perception

    suggest that this apparent preference may be due to infants' preferences for curved contours etc. There is also evidence demonstrating that newborn infants are able to distinguish their mother's face from that of a similar looking (but unfamiliar) female. Depth perception is another complex skill on which much research has been undertaken.

  1. For this assignment I have decided to look at the disorder known as ADHD ...

    Although learning disabilities may occur concomitantly with other handicapping conditions or with extrinsic influences (such as cultural differences, insufficient, or inappropriate instruction) they are not the result of those conditions or influences." Since inattention and hyperactivity are seen as barriers to the learning of an individual, Bender (1995)


    channels, thousands of videos and video games, and millions of Internet sites. The result is a crowded media frenzy in which children are engrossed in, on a daily basis. Therefore we have to ask ourselves, what effects is TV violence having on our children and does it really inspire them to violence?

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work