Encyclopedia of Child Behavior and Development

2011 Edition
| Editors: Sam Goldstein, Jack A. Naglieri

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-79061-9_1720


Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a theory in psychology, proposed by Abraham Maslow in his 1943 paper A Theory of Human Motivation, which he subsequently extended to include his observations of humans’ innate curiosity [2].


Abraham Maslow is a humanistic psychologist who developed a theory of personality that has influenced a number of different fields, including education. This wide influence is due in part to the high level of practicality of Maslow’s theory. This theory accurately describes many realities of personal experiences.

Humanists do not believe that human beings are pushed and pulled by mechanical forces, either of stimuli and reinforcements (behaviorism) or of unconscious instinctual impulses (psychoanalysis). Humanists focus upon potentials. They believe that humans strive for an upper level of capabilities. Humans seek the frontiers of creativity, the highest reaches of consciousness and wisdom. This has been labeled “fully functioning person,”...

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  1. 1.
    Lim, C., & Khruschev, V. (2002). “Maslow’s Pyramid – a necessity?”, 12, 15–17.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Maslow, A. H. (1943). A theory of human motivation. Psychological Review, 50, 370–396.Google Scholar
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    Maslow, A. (1954). Motivation and personality (p. 236). Harper: New York.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Maslow, A. H. (1971). The farther reaches of human nature, Chap. 3. In Self-actualizing and beyond (p. 41). New York: Penguin Compass.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Wahba, A., & Bridgewell, L. (1976). Maslow reconsidered: A review of research on the need hierarchy theory. Organizational Behavior and Human Performance, 15, 212–240.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School Counseling & School PsychologyAzusa Pacific UniversityAzusaUSA