Temperament and Development

Temperament can be understood as a natural characteristics of newborns which can be altered and adjusted with experience. Temperament can be seen early in a child’s development and it stabilizes with time as explained by Fu and Perez-Edgar (2014). It is a biologically based element of human development and this makes it hereditable as recorded by Shiner et al. (2012). To humans, temperament is important as it determines the relationship between a person and the others.

Temperament is an aspect of human development that has been given sufficient attention in the Goldsmith Theory. In the theory, Goldsmith and Campos (1982) understood temperament as those differences shown in individual’s ability to show and experience all primary emotions. The Goldsmith theory limited itself to infant temperament and made assumptions that temperament is not mediated by common features of human development such as socialization and cognitive processes as written by Fu and Perez-Edgar (2014). The theory did not place weight on regulation of emotions as a feature worth consideration while looking at temperament since the theory assumed that infants did not possess the ability to adjust their emotions as indicated by Gottman et al., (1997).

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Out of the theory, Goldsmith and Campos, as noted by Fu and Perez-Edgar (2014), developed the Toddler Behavior Assessment Questionnaire (TBAQ). The theory was emphatic that the TBAQ assessment tool needed to take into consideration the context of behavior needs since dimensions that display temperament are often impacted by situations that can be described as eliciting Goldsmith (1996). The theory paid special attention to psychobiological processes that are underlying the reactivity of emotions and its regulation besides interrogating genetic and environmental influences that are observed in variations of temperament. The theory found out that there were genetic influences on temperament variations and environmental influences on positive affect.

The Keirsery Temperament Report showed that am a Guardian, something that feels correct for me. Guardians are people who have been described as the cornerstone of the society since they serve and preserve the most important institutions socially. These institutions include, family, workplace, churches or places of worship and even in their businesses. Guardians are fun to be working with but they are also serious when it comes to responsibilities and results. Something that I am. I am dependable on most facets of my social work. Another special characteristic of guardians is that they are down to earth. This is my strongest defining term.

In conclusion, my temperament has been affected by people around me. My parents, my father especially, can be said to be a cool and collected person who does not need a lot of paraphernalia to be displayed to him to believe. Facts alone are enough. He is resolute with his decisions and his need for results is something I have copied from him. My mother is a very humble lady from whom my down to earth personality has been derived. She treats everyone with respect without caring who is looking. Social institutions can be improved by having them teach kids some skills such as relying on data rather than intuition. Kids can be taught some simple elements of humanity such as compassion to tune their temperament to the better.


Fu, X., & Perez-Edgar, K. (2014). Theories of Temperament Development. The International Encyclopedia of Social & Behavioral Sciences. Amsterdam: Elsevier.

Goldsmith, H. H. (1996). Studying temperament via construction of the Toddler Behavior Assessment Questionnaire. Child development, 67(1), 218-235.

Goldsmith, H. H., & Campos, J. J. (1982). Toward a theory of infant temperament. In A. N. Emde & R. J. Harmon (Eds.), The development of attachment and affiliative systems (pp. 161-193). New York: Plenum.

Shiner, R. L., Buss, K. A., McClowry, S. G., Putnam, S. P., Saudino, K. J., & Zentner, M. (2012). What Is Temperament Now? Assessing Progress in Temperament Research on the Twenty‐Fifth Anniversary of Goldsmith et al.(). Child Development Perspectives, 6(4), 436-444.

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