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PSY 302
Alba Agostino

Child Development PSY 302 – Lecture 1 – Class Notes Chapter 1 -An Introduction to Child Development The Course… • Syllabus • Textbook • Course requirements • Term tests • WrittenAssignment • In Class Assignments The Course… • Blackboard o Class notes o News • Paper o Library o Articles • Class room culture • Lectures • Email Overview I. Why Study Child Development? II. Historical Foundations of the study of Child Development III. Enduring Themes in Child Development IV. Methods for Studying Child Development Development Psychology • Concerned with changes in human abilities and behaviour across life span • Child development o Changes in child’s cognitive, social, and other capacities  Describes changes – observe.  Uncovers processes and strategies that underlie these changes Question Why Study Child Development? 1 I. Why Study Child Development? A. Raising Children B. Choosing Social Policies C. Understanding Human Nature A. Raising Children • Knowledge of child development can help parents and teachers meet the challenges of rearing and educating children. • Researchers have identified effective approaches that parents and other caregivers can successfully use in helping children manage anger and other negative emotions. B. Choosing Social Policies Simon says-children chould describe, but gave a false answer of what happened. Of 3&4 years old 34% agreed on what case worker said they have seen. 18% of 5&6 yers old. Most kids will say the story that wa questiond with leading questions. • How much trust should we have in preschooler’s courtroom testimonies? • More than 100,000 children testify in legal cases each year • Many are very young, 40% of children that testify in sexual-abuse trials are below the age of 5 • Knowledge of child development permits informed decisions about social-policy questions that affect children. • Psychological research on children’s responses to leading interview questions can help courts obtain more accurate testimonies from preschool children. • Does biased questioning affect the accuracy of young children’s memory for events (Ceci & Bruck, 1998) • 3- 6 year olds played “Simon Says” • Month later children interviewed the children • 34% of 3/4 year olds and 18% of 5/6 year olds C. Understanding Human Nature • Child-development research provides important insights into some of the most intriguing questions regarding human nature. 2 • Recent investigations of development among children adopted from inadequate orphanages in Romania supports the principle that the timing of experiences often influences their effects. Understanding Human Nature con’t -O’Connor et al. (2000) • Investigated intellectual performance of Romanian children adopted to English homes -Group 1: Children from UK who were adopted at 0 – 6 months -Group 2: Children from Romania adopted to English homes at 0 – 6 months -Group 3: Children from Romania adopted to English homes at 7 – 24 months -Group 4: Children from Romania adopted to English homes at 25 – 42 months • Conditions in orphanages extremely poor Results: timing of experiences influences their effects • IQ at age 6 • IQ decreases as time spent in orphanage increases • Still have considerable catch up from entry to UK • Individual variation II. Historical Foundations of the Study of Child Development - Early Philosophers’Views of Children’s Development - Social Reform Movements - The Emergence of Child Development as a Discipline A. Early Philosophers’Views of Children’s Development • Provided enduring insights about critical issues in childrearing, even though their methods were unscientific • Both Plato andAristotle believed that the long-term welfare of society depended on children being raised properly, but they differed in their approaches. Plato versusAristotle Plato: • emphasized self-control and discipline • believed that children are born with innate knowledge Aristotle: • was concerned with fitting child rearing to the needs of the individual child • believed that knowledge comes from experience Later Philosophers 3 • John Locke, likeAristotle, saw the child as a tabula rasa and advocated first instilling discipline, then gradually increasing the child’s freedom. • Jean-Jacques Rousseau argued that parents and society should give the child maximum freedom from the beginning. Social Reform Movements In the nineteenth century, research was conducted for the benefit of children and provided some of the earliest descriptions of the adverse effects that harsh environments can have on child development The Emergence of Child Development as a Discipline • Child development emerged as a formal field of inquiry in the late nineteenth and early twentiet
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