What Is Continuity Versus Discontinuity in Developmental Psychology?

Continuity and discontinuity are two competing theories in developmental psychology that attempt to explain how people change through the course of their lives, where the continuity theory says that someone changes throughout their life along a smooth course while the discontinuity theory instead contends that people change abruptly. These changes can be described as a wide variety of someone's social and behavioral makeup, like their emotions, traditions, beliefs, habits, personality and so on.