The infant born today is helpless and a completely dependent being. But some years later he becomes a mature, independent adult. The transformation from the helpless infant into the mature adult is significant and remarkable. During
this transformation process, the child has learned a lot of empirical facts about his physical and social environments. The process by which individual learn the culture of their society is known as socialization. In broad terms, socialization is the process of converting a biological being into a social being or a process of fitting an individual into an organized society.
We do not, however, restrict socialization with the learning experiences of the young child but use it to identify a lifelong process. Even adult constantly have to learn to take on behavior appropriate to the expectation associated with new position they may occupy in a group, an organization, or society at large.
Let us take some example: as an unmarried young man, a person may have learnt to behave in certain ways, but once married, he may be expected to behave in different other ways. Again if he got employed as an administrative officer in a government establishment, he may be expected to behave still in other ways associated with such a situation
Socialization is not, however, confined to adulthood. It is a life long process. This means that through out his life, the individual continues to learn to take behavior appropriate to the expectation associated with whatever new positions he occupies as an infant, a toddler, a boy, a youth, an adolescent, an adult, a middle age man, e.t.c
Broadly, it is an interaction process whereby one person’s behavior is modified to conform with the expectations by members of the groups to which he belongs.
At birth the mind of a child is a slate (empty) known as tabularasa I.e the mind before it receives the impressions from experience. It is through socialization that the child begins to acquires the norms required by the society. For socialization to be effective, two conditions are necessary: Teachability and social interaction.
Teachability: human beings like any other organisms are capable of learning and accumulating experience, this is achieved through teaching.
Social interaction : learned behavior and teachings have their root in social interaction because no one learns in isolation not necessarily face to face relationship, it could take any form within the environment.
Aims of socialization
Socialization aims at the following:
1. Teaching the fundamental of life in society
2. Transmitting skills important in the society
3. Installing societal aspirations
4. Teaching how to fulfil social role.
A person identifying he or she is, is also largely provided by socialization.
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