Difference Between Growth and Development| B.Ed Notes

The term Growth and Development are inseparable but different concepts. The terms growth and development are used interchangeably to refer to the changes that take place in the life of an individual from birth to maturity.

What is Growth?

It refers to an increase in weight, height (length) and changes in body proportion. Growth takes place in Physical aspects only. It refers to quantitative changes e.g. It is possible to measure how tall a child has grown over a specific period of time.

what is Development?

Development refers to qualitative changes in an individual such as changes in personality or other mental and emotional. Development takes place in all the aspects such as physical, cognitive, language, social, Emotional and others. e.g.: a child’s increased ability to adjust in groups and makes a friend in social aspects of his development.

Development is a joint product of Heredity and Environments. Development is a continuous process It starts from the pre-natal period to death (womb to tomb)

Difference Between Growth and Development

1It is Quantitative in NatureIt is both Quantitative & Qualitative in Nature
2Inorganic change (height, weight)Functional or non-organic (intelligent, behaviour)
3The term ‘Growth’ refers to physical changes of an individual like an increase in height, size, length, weight, etc.Development refers to overall changes in a physical organ or the structure that results in improved functioning of the physical organ
4Growth is Purley physical SenseDevelopment is overall, Physical, Mental, Emotional, Social, moral, or any other
5Growth is only a part of the developmental processDevelopment is a complex and comprehensive process
6Growth is limited to a certain age it stops when maturity has been attainedDevelopment is a continuous process starting from the time of conception and continuing until the end of life (Womb to Tomb)
7Changes produced by growth can be observed and measured directlyDevelopmental changes that result in improved behavior or functioning cannot be measured directly
8Growth focuses only on one aspect i.e increase in a child’s body sizeDevelopment focuses on various aspects like interpersonal skills, and intelligence.
9Growth is an external processDevelopment is an internal process.
10Growth is structuralDevelopment is considered a functional
11Growth is influenced by the developmentDevelopment is independent it does not depend upon growth
12Can be influenced by both genetic and environmental factors, such as nutrition and exerciseIs influenced by a wide range of factors, including genetics, environment, culture, and experience

Types of Human Growth

There are some important points in contrast to Human Growth and Development. There are 3 Major types of Human growth. Let us look one by one

  • Physical Growth: Physical growth refers to the changes in shape, size, height,t and physical characteristics of an Individual t. Physical Growth is measurable in terms of height, weight, strength
  • Cognitive Growth:  It refers to the development of the mind including intellectual abilities, thinking, learning, and remembering. Cognitive growth enables the children’s problem-solving capacity and decision-making skills.
  • Social and Emotional Growth: It refers to the development of children’s ability to build relationships with others, express their emotions and understand what is right and what is wrong in society. Social and emotional growth includes self-awareness, communication, and interpersonal skills.


In conclusion, we can summarize the above points. The term growth and Development is used comprehensively one cannot replace the other. Understanding the knowledge of Growth and development is very important for a teacher. Knowing the difference between growth and development they can maximize the children’s development at various stages of life.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How is growth different from development in biology?

Growth refers to physical changes like an increase in height, size, length, weight, etc. while Development refers to overall changes in a physical organ or the structure that results in improved functioning of the physical organ

Which is more important, growth or development?

Both are equally important Growth and Development are inseparable they work together. Growth is Quantitative in nature and Development is both Qualitative and Quantitative in nature.

What are the different stages of growth and development?

There are four stages of Development Infancy, Childhood, Adolescence, and adulthood. Growth is limited to certain ages it stops when maturity attain and Development is a continuous process from Birth to Death

What is the difference between growth and learning?

Growth refers to Physical and Biological change while learning refers to Improving personality and behavior.

What is the difference between growth and change?

Growth refers to an increase in Height, weight, and Muscles while changes refer to the improvement of the Functioning of organs.

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