How does a person’s self-development occur in the process of socialization?

Personal socialization is the process of integrating a person into the social system by mastering norms, rules, skills and knowledge that will help him function normally in society. If the behavior of animals is determined by instincts, then a person needs socialization for normal life.

In the online program “Self-Knowledge” you will be able to find out your characteristics, strengths and weaknesses and adjust the vector of your development.

What is socialization?

To begin with, as an introduction directly into the field of action of the science of psychology, we present here an interpretation of the concept of socialization.

So, socialization is a person’s acquisition of the skills he needs to live successfully in society. Since human behavior is regulated not only by pure instincts, then without socialization, existence in a society that is well-established in its laws will be impossible. We will try to consider in what areas the socialization of the individual occurs and how it is expressed.

Another concept of psychology is closely related to the process of socialization - the biosocial nature of man. But this is a completely independent topic, and we will not consider it within the scope of this article.


The problem of defining socialization led to the emergence of various concepts that differed in their vision of the content of individual socialization.

PsychoanalysisThe concept is based on the theory of 3 components of the human psyche:
  • The id is the unconscious instinctive part, which includes the innate aspirations of a person, instinctive and irrational impulses of the psyche. Most often include sexual desires;
  • ego is the part of the personality responsible for making decisions, which appears only as a result of the conflict between the Id and Superego and ensures their interaction;
  • superego is the unconscious part that includes the highest value system of a person. It is acquired in the process of assimilation of rules of behavior and social norms. This also includes family prohibitions, which cause feelings of guilt and fear in a person. Socialization is the result of the interaction of these components with the simultaneous acquisition by the individual of power over his own biological nature.
HumanisticThe main representatives of the concept are: E. Fromm, A. Maslow, E. Giddens. Researchers saw the content of the socialization process in the development of personal characteristics. For example, E. Fromm argued that socialization depends on the political system. He identified and analyzed two main types of social character: 1) “market”; 2) “productive”. Market character is the result of an individual’s adaptation to the conditions of the goods and labor markets, his desire to be in demand and to be not an individual with his own qualities, but a “product.” A productive character allows a person to reveal his creative potential and fully realize himself in society. E. Giddens defined socialization as the source of the process of individualization, as well as the ability to think and act independently.
BehavioralA well-known representative of the theory of behaviorism is B.F. Skinner. He believed that socialization is the practice of social learning, which can only be carried out in accordance with given standards.
PhenomenologicalIn this concept, the views of M. Weber, G. Simmel and K. Rogers are known. M. Weber believed that the nature of a person’s behavior determines his role in social interactions; K. Rogers saw the key importance of socialization in the biological tendency of actualization (transformation of possibilities into reality) and the human need for self-improvement. G. Simmel saw the process of socialization as the development of the essential properties of a person.
Structural-functionalThe French sociologist E. Durkheim saw the content of socialization in the disciplinary influence of society. He argued that although socialization is required by society, it is also necessary for the formation of a personal spiritual foundation (platform). He also made an important contribution to the understanding of society as a value-based normative system, emphasizing the peculiarity of social behavior in being regulated by sets of rules that are both obligatory and attractive, due and desirable. The founders of the philosophy of positivism, O. Comte and G. Spencer, considered man to be initially asocial, and the formation of an individual’s personality occurs in society through established norms, rules and influences. One of the founders of the theories of social stratification and social mobility, P. Sorokin, when defining socialization, identified its factors that may be external to the individual - cosmic-geographical, biological-physiological, psychological. The head of the school of structural-functionalism, T. Parsons, created a model of socialization that includes two levels: primary and secondary. A well-known definition of socialization belongs to Z. V. Sikevich, a Russian doctor of sociological sciences, who saw socialization in a person’s assimilation of rules and norms of behavior, the culture of the society in which he lives.
InteractionalSymbolic interactionism is a direction in sociology that lays the basis for social reality on interindividual interactions taken in their symbolic (linguistic) expression. The predecessor of this trend was the American sociologist C.H. Cooley, who rejected the idea of ​​an innate human nature that originates in groups; Personality formation occurs only as a result of social interactions.

Areas of socialization

Psychology names three main sectors, answering our question: in what areas does the socialization of the individual occur, and in what way does it manifest itself? This is communication, activity, self-awareness.

Socialization manifests itself in the creation of connections within these spheres, the expansion and compaction of existing ones. In other words, bridges are built between a person and the people around him.

Family is the sphere of primary socialization

The social sphere in which the socialization of the individual occurs at the initial stage of life is the family. Here the foundations are laid on which more and more stages of socialization are built in the future.

The family is of primary importance for primary socialization. It begins to form a picture-idea of ​​society. The values ​​followed by the family, the information provided by the family to the child, moral norms and values ​​- all these are the very foundations, the building blocks of the future idea of ​​​​society.

Parents are the most important people who influence the child at this stage. Their relationships with each other and with society become an example for the child. They are the ones who are able to instill in an unformed personality the idea of ​​what is normal and what is abnormal.

Dependence of the process on upbringing and immediate environment

Without any doubt, the greatest influence on a person is exerted by the agents of his primary socialization. A child’s personality is formed around the age of five or six years and then it does not change globally, it can only be easily adjusted, or the person will pretend to achieve certain goals.

The formation of personality directly depends on the events occurring in the life of a child up to approximately six years of age. It’s not for nothing that psychologists say that all problems come from childhood. So all the events that happened in childhood bear an indelible imprint on the personality and remain with the person throughout his life.

It is noteworthy that the same events have different effects on different people. This is due to personal qualities and temperaments. Therefore, there are no identical cases and problems.

An example from psychology that will demonstrate both the importance of socialization and the influence of actions on personality development: a mother, due to circumstances or personal beliefs, did not approach the crying baby in the cradle at his first cry. The child felt abandoned and abandoned by everyone. As he grew up, he became extremely sensitive about breaking up with girls, to such an extent that he needed the help of a professional to continue living a full life.

This could only happen to this specific person. For anyone else, the situation described would have affected us differently or not at all. It's impossible to predict for sure.

Therefore, parents never know how certain actions will affect the child and whether they will affect them at all. Of course, certain events such as abuse or violence will leave an indelible mark, but most often it is impossible to predict what and how will affect the child. Often the most ordinary things can have a powerful effect.

Each family chooses its own method of raising a child: in some it is too harsh and tough, in others it is too liberal, and in others it is democratic. This is due to the views of the parents and their personal upbringing.

Of course, no one has the right to tell parents how to raise their own child. But the best method for allowing a child to grow and develop normally is one where parents communicate with him regularly. They explain why something cannot be done, rather than simply prohibiting it.

They tell you what the punishment will be for, and communicate a lot with the child, and also spend time with him doing exciting activities. What is also important is that parents must be consistent. They should not constantly change their minds, and both father and mother should be at the same time, otherwise the child will grow up completely disoriented, lacking any kind of value system, and also quite insecure.

The described education system is desirable for the good development of the child. But, unfortunately, it is not a guarantee or panacea for anything.

Next stage: school

After the family, the center of a person’s socialization moves to school. The main function of an educational institution is to present new conditions for development, interaction with adults and peers. Before the child’s eyes are both individuals like him at the stage of socialization, and adults - ready-made “products” of this process.

The rules that must be followed within school walls also play a significant role. Another innovation of this stage is that now the child will have to join a large group - the class team, the school as a whole.

Principles of harmonious development

The formation of a harmonious personality is aimed at achieving the following goals:

  • formation of the consciousness of a citizen, a patriot;
  • familiarization with universal human values;
  • development of creativity, ability to create;
  • formation of an adequate self-concept, the ability of self-realization.

Principles to be followed:

  • respectful, trusting relationships between teachers and students;
  • conformity with nature (taking into account age, gender, and other natural characteristics);
  • cultural conformity (reliance on the cultural traditions of the people);
  • humanization, aestheticization of the environment of an educational institution.

New stages - new social groups

After school, a person’s socialization follows similar principles. Social circles are expanding, and those that the individual is ready to consider as their own appear. Family, friends, classmates, classmates, teaching staff of a higher educational institution - all these are social circles that influence the further socialization of the individual.

The direction of socialization at all stages remains the same: those norms of behavior that are accepted in the society where a person spends the most time are adopted to a greater extent.

Trying on roles

In addition to the areas in which the socialization of the individual occurs and how it is expressed, we are interested in the roles that a person tries on along this path. One of the important points of this issue is the development of gender roles.

Gender socialization is one of the areas in which this process occurs. It implies familiarization and acceptance of the norms and roles that are inherent to men and women in the surrounding society. Accordingly, it is important for boys to adopt the line of “masculine” behavior, and for girls to adopt “feminine” behavior.

Forms of manifestation

The adaptation has three. So, the first one is internal. It implies a restructuring of human behavior and activity to suit new conditions. A simple example is schoolchildren. They received certificates and entered universities. Now they are students. They have a different schedule and status, implying different behavior. And they will have to adapt to this.

The second form is external. It is also called behavioral. These are those cases when a person does not reshape himself, maintaining his individuality and independence. But outwardly he begins to meet the conditions that require it. Here's an example: a tattooed male daredevil, who loves extreme sports and reckless actions, works in a serious company and occupies a respectable position. Outside the enterprise, he is still the same crazy experimenter. But he wears a formal suit to work and manages serious matters.

And finally, the last form is mixed. Here you can understand everything from the name. And this implies a partial change in a person. In one he completely remakes himself, but in the other he retains his “I”.

Resocialization: making adjustments

We continue to consider individual aspects of the problem, in which areas the socialization of the individual occurs and what conditions are needed for this.

The process of socialization is gradual, but is it reversible? Is it possible to replace existing skills with others? Psychology's answer to this is positive. This process is called resocialization - the elimination of existing behavior patterns and ideas of an individual with new ones.

Such changes always lead to some kind of gap between ideas in the past and present. But the process of resocialization is simply necessary in a dynamic society.

The influence of socialization factors on the formation of character and moral qualities

The formation of character is influenced, as has been said more than once before, only by primary socialization; the impact of secondary socialization is greatly overestimated. With moral qualities, everything is much more complicated. Of course, a person may change his opinion about various things or his attitude towards certain things throughout his life, but not so globally.

The backbone, the basic qualities that were formed initially, cannot be changed in childhood; this is the very essence of a person.

If a child grew up, for example, in a family of racists and, accordingly, adhered to the same point of view all his life, because he could not do otherwise, then at some point in his life events may occur that force him to understand it, soften it, or completely refuse.

This deals with issues of beliefs and attitudes. But if a person was initially greedy, then this will not go away. He can pretend to win people over, he can give out donations through force and seem generous, he can even convince himself that he really is like that, but he will not be able to change himself. Just adjust your behavior so that it suits him. To do this, you need to do a huge amount of work on yourself and continue to do it every day.

Therefore, character formation is influenced exclusively by primary socialization. The formation of moral qualities is also secondary, but which of them is more difficult to say.

Self-development is a complex, multifaceted process. At the same time, it is inextricably linked with every person and is his constant companion throughout his life. A person is constantly developing in one way or another, his life does not stand still: he receives new information, meets people, enters new social groups, so changes are inevitable.

Human nature initially has a tendency towards both self-development and self-realization; this is what he strives for, and without which it is impossible to imagine his life. It’s just that for some this is expressed to a more pronounced degree, and for others less so, since each person is individual, as are his needs.

Self-realization is one of the most important processes in human development; they are inextricably linked, since people are social creatures and they need communication. These processes also occur throughout a person’s life; it is an endless process that in one way or another helps a person achieve what he wants and what he strives for. You need to approach it wisely. A child should be directed in the right direction and the processes of his development controlled, and then he will grow up to be a good, harmonious person without problems in any area of ​​life.

From the following video you will learn 20 rules of personal growth:

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