File Name: growth and development in psychology .zip
By Dr. Saul McLeod , updated Developmental psychology is a scientific approach which aims to explain growth, change and consistency though the lifespan. A significant proportion of theories within this discipline focus upon development during childhood, as this is the period during an individual's lifespan when the most change occurs. Developmental psychologists study a wide range of theoretical areas, such as biological, social, emotion, and cognitive processes.
Empirical research in this area tends to be dominated by psychologists from Western cultures such as North American and Europe, although during the s Japanese researchers began making a valid contribution to the field.
To describe development it is necessary to focus both on typical patterns of change normative development and individual variations in patterns of change i. Although there are typical pathways of development that most people will follow, no two persons are exactly alike. Developmental psychologists must also seek to explain the changes they have observed in relation to normative processes and individual differences.
Although, it is often easier to describe development than to explain how it occurs. Finally, developmental psychologists hope to optimize development, and apply their theories to help people in practical situations e. Think about how children become adults. Is there a predictable pattern they follow regarding thought and language and social development? Do children go through gradual changes or are they abrupt changes? Normative development is typically viewed as a continual and cumulative process.
The continuity view says that change is gradual. Children become more skillful in thinking, talking or acting much the same way as they get taller. The discontinuity view sees development as more abrupt-a succession of changes that produce different behaviors in different age-specific life periods called stages. Biological changes provide the potential for these changes. These are called developmental stages-periods of life initiated by distinct transitions in physical or psychological functioning.
Psychologists of the discontinuity view believe that people go through the same stages, in the same order, but not necessarily at the same rate. When trying to explain development, it is important to consider the relative contribution of both nature and nurture. Developmental psychology seeks to answer two big questions about heredity and environment:. Nature refers to the process of biological maturation inheritance and maturation. One of the reasons why the development of human beings is so similar is because our common specifies heredity DNA guides all of us through many of the same developmental changes at about the same points in our lives.
Nurture refers to the impact of the environment, which involves the process of learning through experiences. Stability implies personality traits present during infancy endure throughout the lifespan. In contrast, change theorists argue that personalities are modified by interactions with family, experiences at school, and acculturation. This capacity for change is called plasticity.
For example, Rutter discovered than somber babies living in understaffed orphanages often become cheerful and affectionate when placed in socially stimulating adoptive homes.
Developmental psychology as a discipline did not exist until after the industrial revolution when the need for an educated workforce led to the social construction of childhood as a distinct stage in a person's life.
The notion of childhood originates in the Western world and this is why the early research derives from this location. Initially, developmental psychologists were interested in studying the mind of the child so that education and learning could be more effective.
Developmental changes during adulthood is an even more recent area of study. This is mainly due to advances in medical science, enabling people to live to old age. Charles Darwin is credited with conducting the first systematic study of developmental psychology. In he published a short paper detailing the development of innate forms of communication based on scientific observations of his infant son, Doddy.
However, the emergence of developmental psychology as a specific discipline can be traced back to when Wilhelm Preyer a German physiologist published a book entitled The Mind of the Child. In the book, Preyer describes the development of his own daughter from birth to two and a half years. Importantly, Preyer used rigorous scientific procedures throughout studying the many abilities of his daughter. In Preyer's publication was translated into English, by which time developmental psychology as a discipline was fully established with a further 47 empirical studies from Europe, North America and Britain also published to facilitate the dissemination of knowledge in the field.
During the s three key figures have dominated the field with their extensive theories of human development, namely Jean Piaget , Lev Vygotsky and John Bowlby Indeed, much of the current research continues to be influenced by these three theorists. McLeod, S. Developmental psychology. Simply Psychology. Baltes, P. Darwin, C. A Biographical Sketch of an Infant. Mind , 2, Preyer, W. Grieben, Leipzig,. The soul of the child: observations on the mental development of man in the first years of life.
Rutter, M. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 22 4 , Toggle navigation. Developmental Questions Developmental Questions. Download this article as a PDF. How to reference this article: How to reference this article: McLeod, S. Back to top. Developmental changes in body or behavior that result from the aging process nature , rather than life experience, or learning nurture. A relatively permanent change in behavior that results from one's experiences.
Developmental changes that characterize most people, i.
This article throws light upon the ten important principles of human growth and development. The principles are: 1. Development is Continuous 2. Development is Gradual 3. Development is Sequential 4.
R 1/14 Methods for studying human growth. Reading psychology-textbook/human-development/theories-of- A PDF is available only if the instructor.
By Dr. Saul McLeod , updated Developmental psychology is a scientific approach which aims to explain growth, change and consistency though the lifespan.
Change is inevitable. As humans, we constantly grow throughout our lifespans, from conception to death. Psychologists strive to understand and explain how and why people change throughout life.
Advancing Human Assessment pp Cite as. Developmental psychology was a major area of research at ETS from the late s to the early s. This chapter covers research on representational competence; parental influences, migration, and measurement; cognitive, personality, and social development of infants and young children; and cognitive, personality, and social development from infancy to adolescence.
Publisher: College of the Canyons. Attribution CC BY. The text is excellent for its content and presentation. The only criticism is that neither an index nor a glossary are provided. Comprehensiveness rating: 3 see less.
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