Structural and strategic approaches to therapy.

Compares and contrasts the assumptions, concepts, goals, and interventions of the
structural and strategic approaches to therapy.
Use the Family Vignette found on page 119 in the Gehart & Tuttle (2003) text, to
create and compare treatment plans using both strategic and structural family therapy
models. If needed you can be creative and elaborate on the family?s problems as you see fit.
How do the approaches compare in their treatment of diversity issues (for example
issues such as age, cultural, spiritual, racial, gender, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic
Address which approach more closely aligns with your own assumptions about
Please use the Northcentral online library to find 3 to 5 articles in a peer reviewed
journal to use as resources to support your essay. These additional articles should be new
resources and not resources that are already assigned for use in this course
Adolescence is a transitional stage from childhood to adulthood. In addition, this is the
age from puberty to attainment of maturity. In the wider society, this stage is luxurious.
Evidently, the actual reason for this transitional (Coleman, 1961) stage was to delay teenagers
from joining labor force, because of scarcity of employment opportunities. Basically,
adolescence is considered as developmental period from puberty to 18-21 years. Nevertheless,
others allege that there is a stage of late puberty extending to young adulthood.
Main Body
G. Stanley Hall’s 1844-1924 Biogenetic Mental of Puberty
Hall was among the first psychologists to expand the psychology of pubescence and use
scientific techniques to assess them. He described this stage from puberty (12-13 years) to 22-25
years. Moreover, he alleged that this was a stage of storm and stress. In German, the stage of
storm and stress comprises of Schiller and Goethe writings. Literally, it is a movement of
idealism, dedication to an objective, rebellion against the old, passion, affliction and expression
of individual emotions. Hall observed a resemblance between goals of these young authors at
the beginning of 19 th century and the emotional characteristics of adolescence. Based on
Stanley’s analogy and extension Darwin’s theory of biological evolution into a psychological
assumption of recapitulation, adolescence correlates to a period when humanity was in a chaotic
transitional phase. According to this theory, Hall affirmed that experiential account of human
race was part and parcel of genetic structure of each human being. The decree of recapitulation
contended that human species, throughout development undergoes situations similar to those

654538 Strategic vs. Structural Family Therapy
which took place though the olden times of mankind. In a nutshell, human being remembers the
development of humanity from early animals such as primitivism, an era of savagery to more
civilized ways of life that resemble maturity. Thus, Hall, (1916) defined adolescence as new
birth. Consequently, Hall, (1916) observed psychological life of adolescent similar to oscillation
between conflicting trends.
Egoism and conceit are traits of this stage as are abasement, humiliation and timidity.
However, Hall, (1916) affirmed that characteristics of adolescent involve remnants of an
unrestrained babyish egoism and an ever-increasing idealistic altruism. The attributes of
goodness as well as virtue are not pure, though again does temptation preoccupy thoughts of
adolescents. With respect, to adolescent wanting seclusion and isolation, Hall, (1916) finds
himself entwined in companionships and crushes. Moreover, adolescent shifts from exhibition of
numerous personalities such as exquisites and kindness to insensitivity and cruelty in some cases.
The exhibition of inertia is as well vacillating with enthusiastic inquisitiveness, along the desire
to explore new things. Throughout this development stage, there is yearning for deity and power
that does not exclude a radical extremism intended against any form of power. According to
Hall, (1916), in later stages of adolescence, the person reiterates the condition of beginning of
contemporary civilization. This period correlates to the end of maturity. However, Hill’s
biogenetic psychology theory did not recognise human race as final product of the development
process because it permitted indefinite further maturity.
Sigmund Freud and the Psychoanalytic Theory of Pubescent Development
Freud, (1948) presented somewhat little concern to the development of adolescent;
however he described it based on psychosexual maturity. In addition, Freud, (1948) shared a
similar concept to Stanley’s genetic theory; that adolescence stage could be regarded as
phylogenetic. Nonetheless, Freud’s affirm that human being undergoes during the earlier
practices of mankind in their psychosexual growth. Freud and psychoanalytic theory allege that
the phases of psychosexual growth are genetically are fairly reliant on ecological aspects.
Furthermore, Freud alleged that adolescence was a global phenomenon and comprised of
psychological, social and behavioral changes; not to mention the connections in both emotional
and physiological changes. Freud also affirms that physiological transformations are linked to
psychological changes particularly increase in negative feelings such as; moodiness,
nervousness, tension and other types of adolescent conduct.

654538 Strategic vs. Structural Family Therapy
 Anna Freud’s Adolescent Defense Mechanism Theory
The theory of adolescence mechanism was developed by Anna Freud who designated
greater significance to adolescence as a vital aspect in the development of character. (Freud,
1925) highlights on the connection between ego and id. Moreover, she affirmed that
physiological development of sexual maturation, from working of sexual glands, is necessary in
emotional realm. The relationship culminates to instinctual rekindling of libidinal forces leading
to emotional disequilibrium. This determines the equilibrium between ego and identity
throughout latency time is perturbed via puberty and domestic conflict outcomes. Therefore,
puberty conflict is the attempt to recover balance. Primarily, (Freud, 1925) was concerned with
pathological growth and less concerned with normal sexual changes. She demonstrates some of
the barriers that effect normal growth including;

 Identity superseding the ego- in this case, Freud argue that no trace will be left of the past
traits of the person and entrance in adulthood will be manifested by a insurgence of
unrestrained gratification of intuitions
 Ego may be successful over identity and confine it in a restricted area, continuously
examined by several defense devices.

With respect to numerous defense devices ego can employ, Freud regarded two
characteristics of adolescence such as asceticism and intellectualization. Asceticism is a result of
generalized suspicion of instinctual desires. This mistrust is greater than sexuality and entails
dressing and eating habits. The development of logical interests as well as adjustment from
concrete to abstract significance is accounted for with regard to defense devices beside the
libido. Naturally, this initiates a crippling of instinctual trends in adulthood and again the
condition is everlastingly detrimental to the person. Ultimately, Freud believes the features
entailed in pubescent disagreement include;
 Strength of identity desire tat is established by physiological and endocrinological
procedures in adolescence.
 Capacity of the ego to handle or produce instinctual forces. This sequentially relies on
behavior training and development of superego of the child throughout latency stage.

654538 Strategic vs. Structural Family Therapy
 The efficacy and nature of defense device at the disposal of the personality.


Apparently, there is little discrepancy on the fact that puberty is a transition phase
between infancy and maturity. Bandura (1964 and Hollingworth (1928) assert that human growth
is a perpetual process not separated into phases. They affirmed that if puberty has become a
changeover phase for some persons is society; communal circumstances are responsible, not
some intrinsic factors of human growth. Lewin defines the pubescent as the insignificant man
and some other theorists tend to support his perception. Coleman (1961) talks of a juvenile
subculture, the pubescent society, which entails a bigger segment of the populace for a
comparatively long prolonged period of interlude. The transitional phase is more noticeable if
the child and adult clusters are well illustrated, as they are in other developed societies. This
changeover demands a re-examination of one’s connection to the social and external
environment as well as the individual’s internal supernatural world.
It is evident that theorists the reminiscent of Sheriff (1947), Erikson (1959), and
Friedenberg (1959), view puberty as the critical stage for the pattern of the mature self-worth.
Meads study appears to underpin this notion as she contends: “In most communities puberty is a
phase of re-valuation and probable reorientation”. Piaget (1947) views puberty as a critical
defining moment at which the person rejects, or at least reviews his estimate of everything that
has been inculculated in him and obtains an individual frame of mind and an individual place in
life. There also is conformity by theorists that, in the event of puberty, the time perception grows
and past and future assume greater significance and become clearly separated.
Piaget affirms that the pubescent can formulate assumptions and contemplate beyond the
current. And with respect to Muuss (1975) this related to a more explicit scheduling of career
activities, preparation for matrimony and envisioning more precise and unending life ambitions,
such as the need for attaining emotional and monetary autonomy. In the event of the pubescent,
fantasy dies way and is also separated from the truth. Childlike play nevertheless decreases as
responsibilities and social anticipations increase. Muuss (1975), assert that conjectures suggest
an imperative changeover period of early pubescent between ten and fourteen years for girls and

654538 Strategic vs. Structural Family Therapy
11 and 15 or 16 for boys. What theorists no longer admit on is that there is a universal phase of
storm and stress. There is new proof that pubescent is not essentially a time of blizzard and
tension but that in which a comparatively stress-free stage (Bandura, 1964).


Bandura, A. (1964).  The stormy decade: fact or fiction? Psychology in the Schools 1964(1),
Coleman, J.S. (1961). The adolescent society. New York: Free Press of Glencoe.
Erikson, E.H. (1950). Childhood and society.  New York: W.W. Norton.
Freud, A.. (1948). The ego and the mechanism of defense. (C. Baines, trans.). New York:
International Universities Press.
Freud, S. (1925). Three contributions to the sexual theory.  Nervous and Mental Disease
Monograph Series, No. 7. New York: Nervous and Mental Disease Publishing Co.
Friedenberg, E.Z. (1959).  The vanishing adolescent. Boston: Beacon Press.
Hall, G.S. (1916). Adolescence. 2 vols. New York: Appleton.
Havighurst, R.J. (1951). Developmental tasks and education. New York: Longmans, Green.
Hollingworth, L.S. (1928).  The psychology of the adolescent. New York: Appleon-Century.
Kohlberg, L. (1963).  The development of children’s orientations toward a moral order.  Vita
Humana (6), 11-33.
Muuss, Rolf E. (1975).  Theories of Adolescence, 3rd Edition. New York: Random House.
Piaget, J.  (1947a). The moral development of the adolescent in two types of society- primitive
and modern.  Lecture given to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization.  Paris.

654538 Strategic vs. Structural Family Therapy
Rank, O. (1964). Will therapy and truth and reality.  New York: Knopf.
Sherif, M. & Cantril. H. (1947). The psychology of ego-involvements.  New York: John Wiley &

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