PURPOSE/OBJECTIVE: This Autobiography/Timeline Project has two separate parts and is designed to help you personalize the theories of personality development and related concepts of the textbook to better understand your own development and function as a human being. The first part is the essay-like written report (Autobiography) to be a minimum of 4 pages. The second part is the 1 page Timeline–see below for instructions.

ASSIGNMENT: To create a report that includes recent and historical data to present a look at your life. You should attempt to address who you are in terms of beliefs, values, aptitudes, thoughts, behaviors, goals and aspirations. Also attempt to describe the historical factors which have led up to influencing the person you are today.

The Autobiography should consist of a minimum of four typed pages.
Be sure that the project submission adheres to the following formatting requirements:
Use double-spacing.
Use size 12 font.
Be sure to include your name/course title on the first page.
Write in complete sentences, use good English grammar, and correct spelling. Take advantage of your word program’s spell checker.
INFORMATION TO BE INCLUDED/ PROCEDURE: At a minimum, you will address the following:
• Ancestral influences
• Family and/or extended family experiences growing up
• Friends and their influence on your life
• School days including your accomplishments and difficulties
• Your travels (family moves, vacations, residences)
• Your various moods
• Religious or spiritual orientation
• Greatest accomplishments, proudest moments, peak experiences
• Greatest problems/challenges
• Your philosophy of life
• Future outlook/plans
• Anything else that you feel would add to your life story that is not mentioned above

TIMELINE: (separate from Autobiography)• A time line page/chart/graph which includes the labeling of significant events (a line with BIRTH at the top and CURRENT AGE at the bottom). Identify significant events in a short summary at the place corresponding to your age when the event occurred. IMPORTANT: Include and discuss/label those events which you feel had a bearing on your progression through Erikson’s psychosocial stages. For instance, at the mark of age 7, I failed second grade and it appeared to impact my self-confidence in achieving success throughout my elementary school years. Another example might be at age 12 being elected as class president helped give me the ability to become successful as a leader with my fears. Another example at the mark of age 16 with dealing with the divorce of my parents seemed to distract me from my search for a identity and I was less able to focus on academic or athletic endeavors which interfered with my ability to distinguish myself in high school. To get full credit for this Timeline assignment, each entry on the timeline must show an attempt at an explanation identifying the stage of Erikson psychosocial model and the likely impact of that event on your resolution of issues at that stage. BE SURE TO LABEL DR. ERIKSON’S STAGE to each of your entries.

IMPORTANT NOTE: In that you may not want the world to know about parts of your life story, be assured that this assignment will NOT be read/reviewed by anyone else but me. You may consider saving a copy for your own use (college, children, grandchildren.)


January 1, 1983

Trust vs Mistrust
I was born first of 3 children to loving parents who provided love and met my needs. My mom tells me that I was a happy baby and seemed to smile at anyone who would look at me. I don’t have any current issues of not trusting people.

Autonomy vs Shame and Doubt
During this stage of my life I was allowed to assert my independence by being able to choose which toys I wanted and what I liked to eat. At the age of 3 I was told that I enjoyed exploring playgrounds where I was allowed supervised freedom without being overly controlled. Today I think I have a healthy self-esteem and confidence in my own skills and choices.

Initiative vs Guilt
At the age of 6 I remember being able to plan my own Birthday party. It gave me a sense of initiative and I was proud of my decisions. I am a self-starter and tend to lead better than follow others.

Industry vs Inferiority
When I was 11 I won 1st place in the Science Fair for my project. I felt proud and it sparked my interest in continuing to feel industrious and develop more confidence.

Identity vs Role Confusion
During my teen years I began to explore my future. I chose a career in Nursing. I became a Candy Striper at the age of 15 and people other than my family began to reinforce my caring nature and encouraged me to seek out a medical profession.

Intimacy vs Isolation
I got married at the age of 25 and I am happy and comfortable. I look forward to beginning a family of my own.

Current age: 27

NOTE and COMPLETE: As most student’s age falls between 18-35, the following Erikson’s stages may not yet apply in your lifeline. Rather than missing out on the meaning/significance of those stages which you haven’t yet experienced, generate a futuristic picture of how each of the following stages might unfold for you to include your outcome and the “why” behind your projection. This could be fun, generate some thought and teach you more about Erikson’s contribution to the understanding of personality development. Enjoy and learn!

Generativity vs Stagnation
(middle adulthood)

Ego Integrity vs Despair
(senior years)

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