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Human Development and Learning Chapter 1: Introduction

by: Ashley Trecartin

Human Development and Learning Chapter 1: Introduction EDU 215

Marketplace > Southwestern Michigan College > Social Science > EDU 215 > Human Development and Learning Chapter 1 Introduction
Ashley Trecartin

GPA 3.43

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These notes are over the whole chapter, mainly has all of the terminology and important subjects.
Human Development and Learning
Dr. Carolyn Hodge-West
Class Notes
Human, development, learning, notes, piaget, Lifespan
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ashley Trecartin on Monday September 26, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to EDU 215 at Southwestern Michigan College taught by Dr. Carolyn Hodge-West in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 16 views. For similar materials see Human Development and Learning in Social Science at Southwestern Michigan College.


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Date Created: 09/26/16
Chapter 1: Introduction I. An Orientation to Lifespan Development A. Lifespan development is the field of study that examines patterns of growth,  change, and stability in behavior that occurs throughout the life span.  B. Characterizing Lifespan Development: The Scope of the Field 1. Topical Areas in Lifespan Development a. Some developmentalists focus on physical development,  examining the ways in which the body’s makeup helps determine  the behavior.  b. Other developmental specialists examine cognitive development,  seeking to understand how growth and change in intellectual  capabilities influences a person’s behavior.  c. Personality development is the study of stability and change in the  characteristics that differentiate one person from another over the  life span.  d. Social development is the way in which individuals’ interactions  and relationships with others grow, change, and remain stable over  the course of life.  2. Age Ranges and Individual Differences a. The parental period: conception to birth b. Infancy & toddler hood: birth to 3 c. Preschool period: 3­6 d. Middle childhood: 6­12 e. Adolescence: 12­20 f. Young adulthood: 20­40 g. Middle adulthood: 40­60 h. Late adulthood: 60­death C. Cohort and Other Influences on Development Developing with Others in a Social  World 1. A cohort is a group of people born at or around the same time in the same  place.  2. Cohort effects are an example of history­graded influences, biological and  environmental influences associated with a particular historical moment.  3. In contrast, age­graded influences are biological and environmental  influences that are similar for individuals in a particular age group;  regardless of when or where they are raised.  4. Development is also affected by sociocultural­graded influences, the  social and cultural factors present at a particular time for a particular  individual depending on such variables as ethnicity, social class, and  subcultural membership.  5. Finally, non­normative life events are specific, atypical events that occur  in a particular person’s life at a time when such events do not happen to  most people.  II. Key Issues and Questions: Determining the Nature—and Nurture—of Lifespan  Development A. Continuous Change Versus Discontinuous Change 1. In continuous change, development is gradual, with achievements at one  level building on those of pervious levels.  2. In contrast, discontinuous change occurs in distinct steps or stages, with  each stage bringing about behavior that is assumed to be qualitatively  different form behavior at earlier stages.  B. Critical and Sensitive Periods: Gauging the Impact of Environmental Events 1. A critical period is a specific time during development when a particular  event has its greatest consequences. Critical periods occur when the  presence of certain kinds of environmental stimuli are necessary for  development to proceed normally.  2. In a sensitive period, organisms are particularly susceptible to certain  kinds of stimuli in their environments. In contrast to a critical period,  however, the absence of those stimuli during a sensitive period does not  always produce irreversible consequences.  C. The Relative Influence of Nature and Nurture Development 1. Nature refers to traits, abilities, and capacities that are inherited from one’s parent.  a. It encompasses any factor that is produced by the predetermined  unfolding of genetic information—a process known as maturation.  2. Nurture refers to the environmental influences that shape behavior.  III. The Psychodynamic, Behavioral, and Cognitive Perspectives A. The Psychodynamic Perspective: Focusing on the Inner Person 1. The psychodynamic perspective is the approach that states behavior is  motivated by inner forces, memories and conflicts that are generally  beyond people’s awareness and control.  2. Freud’s Psychoanalytic Theory a. Freud’s psychoanalytic theory suggest that unconscious forces act  to determine personality and behavior.  b. Freud’s psychosexual development is a series of stages that  children pass through in which pleasure, gratification, is focuses on a particular biological function and body part.  3. Erikson’s Psychosocial Theory a. Psychosocial development encompasses changes in our  interactions with and understandings of one another; as well as in  our knowledge and understanding of us as members of society.  B. The Behavioral Perspective: Focusing on Observable Behavior 1. Behavioral perspective is the approach that suggests that the keys to  understanding development are observable behavior and outside stimuli in the environment.  2. Classical conditioning occurs when an organism learns to respond in a  particular way to a neutral stimulus.  3. Operant conditioning is a form of learning in which a voluntary response  is strengthened or weakened by its association with positive or negative  consequence 4. Principles of operant conditioning are used in behavior modification, a  formal technique for prompting the frequency of desirable behaviors and  decreasing the incidences of unwanted ones.  5. The social­cognitive learning theory is learning by observing the behavior  of another person called a model.  C. The Cognitive Perspective: Examining the Roots of Understanding 1. The cognitive perspective focuses on the processes that allow people to  know, understand, and think about the world.  2. Information processing approaches to cognitive development seek to  identify the ways individuals take in, use, and store information.  3. One of the most recent additions to the array of approaches are cognitive  neuroscience approaches, which look at cognitive development at the level of brain processes.  IV. The Humanistic, Contextual, and Evolutionary Perspectives A. The Humanistic Perspective: Concentrating on Uniquely Human Qualities  1. The humanistic perspective is the theory that contends that people have a  natural capacity to make decisions about their lives and control their  behavior.  B. The Contextual Perspective: Taking a Broad Approach to Development 1. The contextual perspective considers the relationship between individuals  and their physical cognitive, personality, and social worlds.  2. The Bioecological Approach to Development a. The bioecological approach suggests that there are five levels of  the environment that simultaneously influences individuals.  i. The microsystem is the everyday, immediate environment  of children’s daily lives.  ii. The mesosystem binds children to parents, students to  teachers, employees to bosses, friends to friends.  iii. The exosystem represents broader influences: societal  institutions such as local government, the community,  schools, places of worship, and the local media.  iv. The chronosystem underlies each of the previous systems.  b. Vygotsky’s Sociocultural Theory i. Vygotsky’s sociocultural theory emphasizes how cognitive  development proceeds as a result of social interactions  between members of a culture.  C. Evolutionary Perspectives: Our Ancestors’ Contributions to Behavior 1. The evolutionary perspective seeks to identify behavior that is the result of our genetic inheritance from our ancestors.  V. Theories, Hypotheses, and Correlational Studies A. Theories and Hypotheses: Posing Developmental Questions 1. The scientific method is the process of posing and answering questions  using careful, controlled techniques that include systematic, orderly  observation and collecting data.  a. The scientific method involved three major steps.  i. Identifying questions of interest ii. Formulating an explanation iii. Carrying out research that either lends support to the  explanation or refutes it.  2. A hypothesis is a prediction slated in a way that permits it to be tested.  B. Choosing a Research Strategy: Answering Questions 1. Correlational research cannot determine whether one factor causes  changes in the other.  2. In contrast, experimental research is designed to discover causal  relationships between various factors.  C. Correlational Studies 1. Naturalistic observation is the observation of a naturally occurring  behavior without intervention.  2. Case studies are studies that involve extensive, in­depth interviews with a  particular individual or small group of individuals.  3. Survey research, is a type of study where a group of people chosen to  represent some larger population are asked questions about their attitude,  behavior, or thinking on a given topic.  4. Psychophysiological Methods a. Psychophysiological methods focus on the relationship between  physiological processes and behavior.  b. Electroencephalogram (EEG) i. The EEG uses electrodes placed on the skull to record  electrical activity in the brain.  c. Computerized Axial Tomography (CAT) Scan i. A computer constructs an image of the brain by combining  thousands of individual x­rays taken at slightly different  angles.  d. Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) Scan i. Provides a detailed three­dimensional computer­generated  image of brain activity by aiming a powerful magnetic field at the brain.  VI. Experiments: Determining Cause and Effect A. In an experiment an investigator or experimenter typically devises two different  conditions (or treatments) and compares how the behavior of the participants  exposed to each condition is affected.  1. One group, the treatment group, is exposed to the treatment variable being  studied; the other, the control group is not.  B. Independent and Dependent Variables 1. The independent variable is the variable that researches manipulate in the  experiment.  2. In contrast, the dependent variable is the variable that researchers measure  to see if it changes as a result of the experimental manipulation.  C. Choosing a Research Setting  1. A sample is a group of participants chosen for the experiment.  2. A field study is a research investigation carried out in a naturally occurring setting.  3. A laboratory study is a research investigation conducted in a controlled  setting explicitly designed to hold events constant.  D. Theoretical and Applied Research: Complementary Approaches 1. Theoretical research is designed to test some developmental explanation  and expand scientific knowledge, while applied research is meant to  provide practical solutions to immediate problems.  E. Measuring Developmental Change 1. In longitudinal research, the behavior of one or more study participants is  measures as they go.  2. In cross­sectional studies, people of different ages are compared at the  same point in time.  3. In sequential studies, researches examine a number of different age group  at several point in time.  F. Ethics and Research 1. Ethical Guidelines a. Researchers must protect participants from physical and  psychological harm.  b. Researchers must obtain informed consent from participants before their involvement.  c. The use of deception in research must be justified and cause no  harm.  d. Participants privacy must be maintained. 


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