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Berk Textbook Seventh edition Development Through the Lifespan https u1lib org book 5009209 dfc992 Part I Chapter 1 Summary Basic Issues p 5 1 2 Identify three basic issues on which theories of human development take a stand The Lifespan Perspective A Balanced Point of View p 7 1 3 Describe the lifespan perspective on development A Scientific Applied and Interdisciplinary Field p 5 1 1 What is developmental science and what factors stimulated expansion of the field developmental science is an interdisciplinary field devoted to understanding human constancy and change throughout the lifespan Research on human development has been stimulated by both scientific curiosity and social pressures to improve people s lives Each theory of human development takes a stand on three fundamental issues 1 Is devel opment a continuous process or a series of discontinuous stages 2 Does one general course of development characterize all individuals or do many possible courses exist depending on the contexts in which they live 3 Are genetic or environmental factors more important in influencing development the nature nurture controversy and are indi vidual differences stable or characterized by substantial plasticity The lifespan perspective envisions human change from a developmental systems perspec tive It assumes that development is lifelong multidimensional affected by biological psy chological and social forces multidirectional a joint expression of growth and decline and plastic open to change through new experiences According to the lifespan perspective the life course is influenced by multiple interacting forces 1 age graded influences which are predictable in timing and duration 2 history graded influences unique to a particular his torical era and 3 nonnormative influences unique to one or a few individuals Scientific Beginnings p 12 1 4 Describe major early influences on the scientific study of development Darwin s theory of evolution influenced impor tant developmental theories and inspired scien tific child study In the early twentieth century Hall and Gesell introduced the normative approach which measured behaviors of large groups to yield descriptive facts about development Binet and Simon constructed the first successful intelligence test which sparked interest in indi vidual differences in development and led to a heated controversy over nature versus nurture Mid Twentieth Century Theories p 14 1 5 What theories influenced human development research in the mid twentieth century In the 1930s and 1940s psychiatrists and social workers turned to the psychoanalytic perspective for help in treating people s emo tional problems In Freud s psychosexual theory the individual moves through five stages during which three portions of the per sonality id ego and superego become inte grated Erikson s psychosocial theory expands Freud s theory emphasizing the development of culturally relevant attitudes and skills and the lifespan nature of development As the psychoanalytic perspective gained in prominence behaviorism and social learning theory emerged emphasizing the study of directly observable events stimuli and responses and the principles of conditioning and modeling These approaches gave rise to applied behavior analysis in which proce dures of conditioning and modeling are used to eliminate undesirable behaviors and increase desirable responses Piaget s cognitive developmental theory emphasizes that children actively construct knowledge as they move through four stages beginning with the baby s sensorimotor action patterns and ending with the abstract systematic reasoning system of the adolescent and adult Piaget s work has stimulated a wealth of research on children s thinking and encouraged educa tional programs emphasizing children s discovery learning Recent Theoretical Perspectives p 19 1 6 Describe recent theoretical perspectives on human development Information processing views the mind as a complex symbol manipulating system much like a computer Because this approach provides pre cise accounts of how children and adults tackle cognitive tasks its findings have important impli cations for education Researchers in developmental cognitive neuroscience study the relationship between changes in the brain and the development of cognitive processing and behavior patterns More recently investigators in developmental social neuroscience are examining relationships between changes in the brain and emotional and social development Findings on experiences that affect brain development at various ages are contributing to interventions for enhancing cognitive and social functioning Three contemporary perspectives emphasize contexts for development The first ethology stresses the adaptive value of behavior and inspired the sensitive period concept In evolutionary developmental psychology which extends this emphasis researchers seek to understand the adaptiveness of specieswide competencies as they change with age The second perspective Vygotsky s sociocultural theory which focuses on how culture is trans mitted from one generation to the next through social interaction views cognitive development as a socially mediated process Through coopera tive dialogues with more expert members of society children come to use language to guide their own thought and actions and acquire cul turally relevant knowledge and skills The third perspective ecological systems theory views the individual as developing within a complex system of relationships affected by multiple nested layers of the surrounding environment microsystem mesosystem exosystem and macrosystem The chronosystem represents the dynamic ever changing nature of individuals and their experiences Comparing and Evaluating Theories p 26 1 7 Identify the stand taken by each major theory on the three basic issues of human development Theories vary in their focus on different domains of development in their view of how develop ment occurs and in their strengths and weak nesses For a full summary see Table 1 4 on page 27 Studying Development p 26 1 8 Describe methods commonly used in research on human development naturalistic observations gathered in everyday environments permit researchers to see directly the everyday behaviors they hope to explain Structured observations which take place in laboratories give every participant an equal opportunity to display the behaviors of interest Self report methods can be flexible and open ended like the clinical

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EVC PSYCH 92 - Summary

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