Psychology Paper on Empathy’s Role in Cognitive and Social Development

Empathy’s Role in Cognitive and Social Development

Empathy plays a significant role with respect to the social development of children. According to Brody (2010), most children with high self-esteem show effective levels of empathy to others. In this regard, empathy helps children to develop friendship with their peers since they can identify with the issues of one another. Additionally, empathy helps children to respond positively and effectively to the others’ feelings. They can relate positively to their peers since they are socially secure. For example, children who are continually shown love from the parents develop the ability to perform acts of charity while playing with others. They are often secure and willing to share with others.

Empathy also plays a great role in adolescent social development. Most adolescents experience issues related to both mental and physical development. As a result, they struggle with personality issues. However, empathy can help them to develop social skills in their relationships. For example, an empathetic adolescent who is socially secure can help the peers to accept their body and attitudinal changes (Tugend, 2011). Such adolescents will not be judgmental since they understand the feeling of insecurity. As a result, they can empathize with others. Consequently, this helps them to become responsible society members in life.

Empathy can also help in the social development of adults. In this case, empathy can help adults to perform charitable works in the society. For example, these adults can participate in activities such as helping the poor, visiting the patients in hospitals, as well as, relatives and friends in prison. An empathetic adult can foster good relationships since empathy helps them to exercise patience and long-suffering with people (Brody, 2010). As a result, such adults help to empower others to overcome problems in life.



Brody, J. E. (2010). Empathy’s natural, but nurturing it helps. The New York Times.

Tugend, A. (2011). Doing the ethical thing may be right, but it isn’t automatic. The New York Times.