PSYC 2010- Chapter 10 Notes
PSYC 2010- Chapter 10 Notes Psyc 2010-003
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Morgan Dimery on Wednesday April 20, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Psyc 2010-003 at Clemson University taught by Edwin G. Brainerd in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 20 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Psychology in Psychlogy at Clemson University.
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Date Created: 04/20/16
Chapter 10 Human Development Across the Life Span The prenatal period of development is from conception to birth, so it lasts about nine months. There are different stages in the prenatal period: • Germinal-‐ this includes the first two weeks after conception. It starts after the zygote is created by fertilization. The zygote must implant itself into the uterine wall. The placenta starts to form during this stage. • Embryonic-‐ this includes from two weeks until the end of the second month. Many of the vital organs and body systems begin to form. This is a very vulnerable stage. • Fetal-‐ this includes from two months until the time of birth. Muscles and bones begin to harden, brain cells multiply, and a layer of fat is deposited under the skin for insulation. The threshold of viability is the age at which a baby can survive being born prematurely. There are different things that can have an effect on the child’s health and wellbeing. It is important for the woman to have a very balanced diet throughout her pregnancy. If she does not then this can lead to birth complications and neurological deficits in the child. It has been found that increased levels of stress are associated with stillbirths, impaired immune response, heightened vulnerability to infectious diseases, and slowed motor development, below-‐average cognitive development, and social deficits. Stress seems to disrupt the hormonal balance in prenatal development. Drug use can be harmful to the baby because most drugs are able to go through the placenta to the fetus. Many babies are born being addicted to narcotics. Prescribed drugs and tobacco products are also harmful. Heavy drinking of alcohol by the mother can lead to serious problems in the child. Fetal alcohol syndrome is a group of newborn problems that are associated with excessive alcohol consumption during pregnancy. These problems include microcephaly, heart defects, irritability, hyperactivity, and delayed motor development. The placenta is able to screen out some diseases, but not all. Therefore, some diseases that the mother may have could cause difficulties with the child. Exposure to environmental toxins has also been associated with problems in newborns. It has also been found that exposure to all of these negative things can cause problems in an adult’s life later on, even if they do not effect them right at birth. Infants follow a general pattern for motor development. This is the progression of muscular coordination required for physical activities. The main skills include grasping and reaching for objects, manipulating objects, sitting up, crawling, walking, and running. This development depends on growth. Maturation has been associated with early progress in these motor skills. Maturation is the development that reflects the gradual unfolding of the genetic blueprint. It is believed that the driving force behind motor development is infants’ ongoing exploration of their world and their need to master specific tasks. Many parents look at developmental norms to see how their child is developing in relation to other children. These indicate the typical age at which a child displays various behaviors and abilities. This is okay for parents to do as long as they don’t expect their child to be exactly like the norms say. Variations from the norm are normal and expected. Harry Haslow did an experiment about why children develop such a special attachment to their mothers. He removed monkeys from their mothers at birth and raised them in a lab with “substitute” mothers. One type of mother was made of terrycloth and could “comfort” the baby monkeys. The other type was made of wire. Half of the monkeys were fed by the terrycloth monkey, and the other half were fed by the wire monkey. A frightening stimulus was supplied, and it caused the monkeys to all run to the terrycloth monkey, even if that was not the monkey that fed them. This shows that it is something other then the reinforcement by feeding that causes the attachment. John Bowlby said that there was a biological basis for attachment. Attachment is the close emotional bond of affection that develops between infants and their caregivers. At first the child does not show much of a preference for one caregiver or another, but around 6-‐8 months of age they show much more preference for their mother. When separated from their mother during this time many infants go through separation anxiety. This is emotional distress that is seen in many infants when they are separated from someone they have an attachment with. Mary Ainsworth found that infant-‐mother attachments fall into three categories: • Secure attachment-‐ infants play and explore normally when their mother is present, get upset when she leaves, and then are happy again when she returns. • Anxious-‐ambivalent attachment aka resistant attachment-‐ they are anxious even when their mother is near, get upset when she leaves, and are not easily calmed when she returns. • Avoidant attachment-‐ these children seek little attachment to their mothers and do not really get distressed when she leaves. Mothers who are more sensitive tend to have infants who have secure attachment. Culture does not seem to affect attachment, although some places have higher rates for secure attachments than others do. Children also go through the stages of language development. It tends to be at the same pace for most children no matter their culture. Research has shown that infants seem to learn some vowels while they are still in the womb. During the first six months of life their language is mostly just crying, cooing, and laughter. Then the infant will begin to babble and eventually this starts to resemble the language spoken by people in the child’s environment. Children learn the meaning of words before they can speak, and most children say their first words around 10-‐13 months of age. An infant’s receptive vocabulary is larger than their productive vocabulary. This means that they can comprehend more words than they can actually say themselves. A vocabulary spurt seems to occur around 18 months, which is when toddlers realize that everything has a name. Fast mapping seems to be one of the reasons behind this. This is the process by which children map a word onto an underlying concept after only one exposure. Some errors do occur, such as overextension or underextension. Overextension is when a child incorrectly uses a word to describe a wider set of objects or actions than it is meant for. This could be like child calling anything that is round an apple. Underextensions are when the child uses a word to describe a narrower set of objects than it is meant for. This could be like the child only referring to their favorite doll as a doll. When children first start to combine words into sentences, this is called telegraphic speech. It consists mostly of content words, articles, and prepositions. Children will start to be able to say more complex ideas, but their grammar might not always be correct. This is called overregularizations. This occurs when the child applies grammar rules somewhere that they are not needed. Erikson came up with a theory of development that was a series of psychosocial crises. He had a stage theory, which is that each stage brings a psychosocial crisis that involves transitions in important social relationships. He said that personality is shaped by how these crises are dealt with. Jean Piaget has the theory of cognitive development. This is the transition in youngsters’ patterns of thinking. It includes reasoning, remembering, and problem solving. The stages are as follows: • Sensorimotor period-‐ birth-‐2. This is when infants begin to coordinate their sensory input with their motor actions. The child develops object permanence. This is when a child is able to know that an object is still there even if they cannot see it. • Preoperational period-‐ 2-‐7. Children start to develop irreversibility, centration, and egocentrism. Irreversibility is the fact that once a child learns something, they will not understand how they ever thought it was another way. Centration is when a child just focuses on one aspect of a problem, and ignores everything else. Egocentrism is the fact that they are not able to share another person’s viewpoint. They also believe in animism, which is that all things are living. • Concrete operational period-‐ 7-‐11. Children are now able to perform operations on images of tangible objects and actual events. The child master reversibility, which is the ability to mentally undo an action. They will also master decentration, which is the ability to focus on more than one aspect of a problem at a time. There is a decrease in egocentrism and the child also masters conservation. This is the fact that just because the shape or appearance of something changes, that doesn’t mean that the quantity is different. Children are now able to solve problems that involve hierarchical classification. • Formal operational period-‐ 11-‐adulthood. Children can now apply their operations to abstract concepts as well as concrete. They start to enjoy hypothetical possibilities and questions. There are some criticisms of his theory because he underestimated young children’s cognitive development. It has also been found that patterns of thinking are present in more than one stage of development. This development also differs from child to child depending on things like culture. Lev Vygotsky has the sociocultural theory, which stresses the importance of culture and language in cognitive development. He said that development is highly influenced by interactions among parents, teachers, and other people. He said that language served as the foundation for cognitive development. Researchers have found that children can know about certain things that they have had no opportunity to learn about, which shows that some cognitive abilities may be innate. Laurence Kohlberg had a theory of moral development. The stages are: • Punishment orientation-‐ right and wrong is determined by what is punished and what is not • Naïve reward orientation-‐ right and wrong is determined by what is rewarded and what is not • Good boy/good girl orientation-‐ right and wrong is determined by close others’ approval or disapproval • Authority orientation-‐ right and wrong is determined by society’s rules and laws, which should be obeyed rigidly • Social contract orientation-‐ right and wrong is determined by society’s rules, which are viewed as fallible rather than absolute • Individual principles and conscience orientation-‐ right and wrong is determined by abstract ethical principles that emphasize equity and justice Adolescence is the bridge between childhood and adulthood. There are many significant moral, cognitive, and social changes during this time. One of the things is the development of secondary sex characteristics. These are things that are not essential for reproduction, but distinguish a male from a female. Kids will reach puberty, which is when sexual functions reach maturity and their primary sex characteristics are fully developed. This marks the beginning of adolescence. Puberty for females is usually signaled by menarche, which is the first occurrence of a menstrual cycle. For males it is signaled by spermarche, which is the first occurrence of an ejaculation. There are also neurological changes that take place during adolescence. One of these things is that neurons are becoming more myelinated. It has been observed that the prefrontal cortex is the last brain structure to be fully mature. The maturation may not be complete until the mid 20’s. Erikson said that the main struggle during adolescence is forming a clear sense of identity. There are different identity stages: • Diffusion-‐ state of rudderless apathy, no commitment to ideology • Foreclosure-‐ premature commitment to values, visions, and roles • Moratorium-‐ delaying commitment for a while to experiment with alternative ideologies and careers • Achievement-‐ arriving at a sense of self and direction after some consideration of alternative possibilities There are some adjustments and changes that take place during adulthood. Erikson divided adulthood into 3 stages: • Intimacy vs. isolation-‐ the key concern is whether one can develop the capacity to share intimacy with others • Generativity vs. self-‐absorption-‐ key challenge is to acquire a genuine concern for other welfare of future generations • Integrity vs. despair-‐ key challenge is to avoid the tendency to dwell on the mistakes of the past and on one’s imminent death (during retirement) Adults will also experience an adjustment to marriage. Optimism can either help or hurt the marriage. The personality trait of optimism is good because it means that good outcomes are expected and productive problem solving is used. Relationship-‐ specific optimism is not good because that means that someone always thinks things will be good in the marriage. They feel like no problems will ever come up and need to be worked through. There has also been an association with premarital cohabitation and divorce rates. There is also an adjustment to parenthood. The first child can be emotionally draining and seems to have more of an impact on mothers than fathers. Dr. Brainerd says that the empty nest syndrome is BS. He said that yes your parents love you but now that you’re gone they have an extra room in their house, more time alone, and more spending money. Some physical changes that occur with adulthood include hair thinning and graying, and body fat increase. Eyesight starts to become worse. Women go through menopause. The amount of brain tissue and the brain weight’s declines with age. This can influence diseases such as dementia. Memory can also be affected with age. Elizabeth Kuber-‐Ross has five stages for death and dying: • Denial • Anger • Bargaining with God for more time • Depression • Acceptance Personal Application-‐ Understanding Gender Differences • Females seem to have an advantage with verbal skills, while males seem to have an advantage with mathematical skills • Males tend to be more physically aggressive than females
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