What is Maturation? - Definition, Theory & Process

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: What Is Tolerance? - Definition, Types & Examples

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
 Replay
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:01 What Is Maturation?
  • 0:16 Maturation Defined
  • 0:33 Physical Maturation
  • 1:21 Cognitive Maturation
  • 2:52 Lesson Summary
Add to Add to Add to

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Login or Sign up

Timeline
Autoplay
Autoplay
Speed

Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Dana Dance-Schissel

Dana teaches social sciences at the college level and English and psychology at the high school level. She has master's degrees in applied, clinical and community psychology.

Maturation refers to the ways in which we grow and develop throughout the lifespan. This lesson will discuss the various types of maturation, as well as an associated theory.

What is Maturation?

Think back on when you were a very young child. Can you remember being physically small? How about the way you solved problems when you were very young? I'll bet it was very simplistic compared to how you figure things out now. These types of questions shed light on the process of maturation.

Maturation Defined

Maturation is the process by which we change, grow, and develop throughout life. Developmental psychologists look at many different types of maturation throughout the lifespan. The types of maturation that we'll focus on in this lesson are physical maturation and cognitive maturation.

Physical Maturation

Physical maturation focuses on the physical changes that occur as we age. For example, at birth we mainly use reflexes to interact with the world. Sucking is a reflex that allows us to take in nutrition. As we get older, we do not rely on our reflexes as much because we develop gross motor skills such as crawling, sitting up, walking, and running. We also develop fine motor skills for things like writing and drawing. We grow taller and our weight increases. We go from being infants to toddlers to kids to adolescents and finally adults. Surprisingly though, we do not stop maturing once we become adults! Through the process of senescence, or aging, we move from early adulthood through middle adulthood and lastly into late adulthood. Physical changes happen in each of these stages. They are all examples of physical maturation.

Cognitive Maturation

Why is it that babies think peek-a-boo is funny, yet adults would likely think you were crazy if you asked them to play? Cognitive maturation is the way we change our thinking patterns throughout the lifespan and its principles will help to explain why babies find Peek-a-boo funny while adults do not.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about Study.com
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 160 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create An Account
Support