PSY 335 Week 2 Notes
PSY 335 Week 2 Notes PSY 335
Popular in Psychology of Childhood
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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Bria Harris on Saturday September 12, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to PSY 335 at Syracuse University taught by W. Wood in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 199 views. For similar materials see Psychology of Childhood in Psychlogy at Syracuse University.
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Date Created: 09/12/15
PSY 335 Psychology of Childhood Week 2 Lecture Notes September 8th and 10th Enduring Themes in Child Development 1 Nature vs Nurture Single most basic question about child development is how nature amp nurture interact to shape the developmental process Nature our biological endowment especially the genes we receive from our parents Nurture wide range of environments both physical amp social that in uence our development Developmental scientists now recognize that every characteristic we posses is created through the joint workings of nature and nurture They ask how nature amp nurture work together to shape development 2 The Active Child Children contribute to their own development from early in life amp their contributions increase as they get older 3 Important Contributions during children s first years are their 1 Attentional pattern eg paying attention to the mother more than strangers 2 Use of language 3 Play Older children amp adolescents choose many environments friends amp activities for themselves their choices can have a large impact on their futures 3 ContinuityDiscontinuity Continuous development changes with age occur gradually Discontinuous development age related changes include occasional large shifts Stage theories propose that development occurs the progression of age related qualitative shifts Conservation task task where children have to determine the amount of liquid in different size glasses younger children don t understand the concept that they glasses have the same amount of liquid while older children do Depending on how its viewed changes in height can be viewed as continuous or discontinuous Examining height at yearly intervals from birth to 18 years of age makes growth look gradual and continuous Examining the increases in height from one year to the next makes growth look discontinuous 4 Mechanisms of Developmental Change In general interaction of genes amp environment determines both what amp when changes occur eg One mechanism involves the role of brain activity genes amp learning experiences in the development of effortful attention Limbic system anterior cingulate regulate emotions amp settingmanaging goals respectively Delay gratification eg marshmallow test What role do genes amp learning experiences play in in uencing this mechanism or effortful attention Genes in uence production of neurotransmitters amp variations in these genes are associated with performance on tasks of effortful attention Children s experiences can also change the wiring of the brain system that produces effortful attention 5 Sociocultural Context Sociocultural context refers to the physical social cultural economic amp historical circumstances that make up a child s environment Contexts of development differ within and between cultures Development in uenced by ethnicity race and socioeconomic status The socioeconomic contexts exerts a particularly large in uence on a child s life Table 12 Children Living Below the Poverty Line Children from poor families tend to do less well 0 Increased rates of health problems 0 Increased socio emotional behavioral problems in kids 0 Increased drop out rates and teen pregnancy 6 Individual Differences Differences among kids arise very quickly in development Children s genes treatment by other people their subjective reactions to others treatment and choice of environments all contribute to differences among children even those within the same family 7 Research and Children s Welfare Child development research yields practical benefits in diagnosing children s problems amp in helping children to overcome them eg Research method of preferential looking helps in the diagnosis of cataracts in infants as young as 2 months old Methods for Studying Child Development 1 2 The Scientific Method 4 Steps to Testing Beliefs that involves 1 Choosing a Question 2 Formulating a Hypothesis 3 Testing Hypothesis 4 Drawing a Conclusion Importance of appropriate measure Relevance to hypothesis Reliability Validity Reliability degree to which measurements of a given behavior are consistent Interrater reliability amount of agreement in observation of different raters who witness the same behavior Testretest reliability when measures of performance are similar on 2 more occasions Validity the degree to which a test or experiment measures what it s intended to measure Internal validity degree to which effects observed within experiments can be attributed to variables that the researcher has manipulated External validity degree to which results can be generalized beyond the findings of the particular experiment or test Contexts for gathering Data about Children Interviews Structured Procedure where all participants are asked the same questions eg asking college students about their studying habits how many hours a day do they study where do they study their studying techniques Clinical Procedure where questions are adjusted in accord with answers participants provide Caveat Sometimes people want to give the answer that they think is quotrightquot to present themselves in a better light can give researcher false information Naturalistic Observation Used when primary goal of research is to describe how kids behave in their usual environment Limitations 1 Many behaviors only occur occasionally on an everyday basis 2 Behaviors vary on many dimensions difficult to determine the in uence of a particular behavior Structured Observation Presenting similar situations to kids amp recording each kid s behavior enabling direct comparisons of different kids behavior making it possible to establish generalizations of behavior across varying tasks Limitations 1 Doesn t give extensive information a child s individual experience similar to interviews 2 Doesn t give openended everyday data found in naturalistic observations 3 Correlation and Causation The main goal of studies that use correlational designs is to determine how variables are related to one another Correlation association between 2 variables The direction amp strength of a correlation is a statistic known as the correlation coefficient Correlation coefficient can be from 10 to 10 weakest to strongest Correlation DOES NOT EQUAL causation Direction of causation problem It s not possible to tell from correlation which variable is the cause and which is the effect eg hours spent studying and grade achievement we do not know whether or not good grades causes students to study more or if studying more causes students to get good grades Third variable problem Correlation between 2 variables may arise from both being in uenced by a 3rd unknown variable Experimental Designs Allows inferences about causes and effects Rely on random assignment a procedure in which a child has an equal chance of being assigned to any group within an experiment eg ipping a coin Experimental control the ability of the researcher to determine the specific experiences that children have during the experiment 0 Children in the experimental group receive an experience of interest the independent variable 0 Those in the control group don t receive the independent variable 0 The dependent variable is a behavior that is hypothesized to be affected by the independent variable Prenatal Development 1 Fetal Experience Sensory structures are present relatively early in prenatal development amp play a vital role in fetal development and learning Visual experience is negligible Fetal experiences tactile stimulation as a result of their own activity eg moving around in the womb 2 Fetal Learning At 32 weeks the fetus decreases responses to repeated or continued stimulation a simple form of learning called habituation Increase stimuli decrease response Newborns have been shown to recognize rhymes amp stories presented before birth prefer them to other stories Newborns also prefer smells tastes and sound patterns that are familiar because of prenatal exposure 3 Hazards to Prenatal Development So far the focus has been on the normal course of prenatal development but sometimes there are hazards that occur during prenatal development Miscarriages About 45 of conceptions results in miscarriages and about 1520 of pregnancies of which women are aware are miscarried Majority of embryos that miscarry early have severe defects Environmental In uences Teratogens are environmental agents that have the potential to cause harm during prenatal development Timing is a crucial factor in the severity of the effects of teratogens o Sensitive period 0 Dose dependence how much is consumed how regularly Legal Drugs Cigarettes Cigarettes during pregnancy is linked to stunted growth amp low birth weight 0 SIDS Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Legal Drugs Alcohol Maternal alcoholism can lead to FAS Fetal Alcohol Syndrome which is associated with mental retardation facial deformity and other problems Maternal Factors Age nutrition disease amp emotional state of the mom have an impact on prenatal development 0 Mothers 15 years old and younger infants 3 to 4 times more likely to die before age 1 than moms 2329 years old 0 lack of specific nutrients of Vitamins like folic acid can have dramatic consequences 0 STD s present hazards to the fetus o A woman s emotional state can impact the fetus as well
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