Why is theory important?
- Every theory lets you see/do things differently
- Development will look different when looked at through different theories.
Blank slate (Tabula Rosa) – John Locke: children begin as nothing and character is shaped by experiences.
Pushed forward ideas of environmental factors, not just heredity/genetics.
Maturation – Jean Jacques Rousseau
Genetically determined, let innate abilities develop on own; adult training would hurt a child’s built in moral sense and
way of thinking and feeling; not a blank slate
Nobel Savages: children already know who they are and what they need to do.
Continuity VS discontinuity
Continuous: you stay relatively the same over time; if you are friendly at 5, you will be friendly at 25.
Discontinuous: something qualitative about you changed; something happened and you changed.
Not accurate: development is not perfectly predictable.
Stage theories are discontinuous.
Active vs Passive Child
Active: children cause things to happen to them.
Passive: things happen to them
Nature & Nurture
Freud: Development is determined by how we resolve conflicts at different ages
ID: primal, basic natural instincts; emerges at birth; want immediate gratification of bodily needs and wants; ex. Crying
hungry baby; Develops over time as needs and wants change.
Ego: the rational and practical component of our personality; emerges during first year of life (learning we can’t always
have what we want); ego must resolve the conflicts between the ID and superego, and between real world obstacles;
channels demands into socially acceptable behaviour; ex. Wants to play with a toy a kid has; ID would go take it; Ego
would suggest to play with the other child to play with the toy.
Superego: “Moral agent”; Emerges during preschool years; begin to understand right and wrong messages from the
adults around us; Superego would remind ID what is right/wrong and the Ego will channel it into acceptable behaviour
(compromise). Two Important Discoveries:
1) Early experiences can have enduring effects on
2) Individuals experience conflict between what they want to
do and what they should do.
Freud’s theories and discoveries made the basis for today’s therapy
(discussion of problems with a stranger)
Erik Erikson: stage theorist; each stage is defined by a crisis/challenge during a lifespan; earlier stages must be dealt with
in order to advance.
1) Basic trust vs. Mistrust (Birth to 1 year): develop sense that the world is safe; do you believe that your caregiver
will always be there for you; mistrusting your caregiver would give you insecure attachment (you feel you don’t
need them because they do not help you enough)
2) Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt (1-3 years): realize that one is an independent person and who can make
decisions; parents need to learn a balance between being controlling or over protective; ex. If a child is trying to
potty train and the parents get mad if they have an accident they may feel shame and doubt; if you chastise
them about what they want to wear, how will they feel?
3) Initiative vs Guilt (3-6 years): develop willingness to try new things and handle failure; they are trying out new
things and using their imagination; when they want to help you clean (if they aren’t doing it right, they may feel
bad); focuses on good things they do, instead of bad. Fine line between allowing them to explore or getting mad
at them and causing guilt.
4) Industry vs. Inferiority (6 years to adolescence): learn basic skills and to work with others; wanting to work with
others and prove you can do it; involves people around you (teachers, siblings, parents, and friends).
Ivan Pavlov: helps us recognize what events usually occur in the everyday world so we can anticipate what will happen
next; learning occurs beyond our awareness; ex. When a bell rings at school; you automatically know that class is
starting; when professor walks into room, everyone is quiet.
1) Before Conditioning
Natural Stimulus: does not lead to you learning ex. Bell
Unconditioned Stimulus (UCS): produces specific response without prior learning; ex. Dog food Must be presented at the same time to cause learning.
Unconditioned Response (UCR): response to UCS; ex. Salivating.
2) After Learning
Conditioned Stimulus (CS): paired with neutral stimulus; now produces a learned response. Ex. Bell ringing produces
Conditioned Response (CR): learned response to the non-neutral stimulus.
Extinction: CS (bell) is presented without the UCS (dog food) over time; CR with no longer occur.
UCR: putting out hand
CS: computer noise produces putting hand out and bad breath feeling
CS: putting hand out in response to computer noise.
FRHD Lecture 3
Behaviourism & Classical Conditioning
John Watson: applied classical conditioning to humans; learning determines who you will be; believed that we can teach
you to be who you are.
Little Albert: made him afraid of anything furry.
BF Skinner: studied the consequences of behaviour.
- Increases likelihood of future behaviour
- POSITIVE: reward; ex. Doing something then receiving chocolate.
- NEGATIVE: behaviour is increased by taking awa