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PSY100Y5 Lecture Notes - Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, Primitive Reflexes, Developmental Psychology

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Dax Urbszat

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May 31st
-the focus of developmental psychology is on how humans develop and change over time
ochange can occur across the life span of the person
cradle to the grave developmental psychology
oassumes that change is inevitable
ochange can be continuous or discontinuous
Core Developmental Issues
-delineate the interacting forces of nature and nurture
omaturation: refers to biologically determined changes that follow an orderly
odetermine the importance of early experiences
the notion of critical periods
-assess whether change is continuous or in qualitative stages
Critical Periods
-two kinds of critical periods
oneed stimulation, need language, and sensitivity
-critical period concept suggests that the brain is set to acquire a function during a limited
period of time
-if key experiences do not occur during a critical time period, the function may not
develop or may not be fully developed
othe case of Genie: a girl who was isolated until the age of 13
although Genie made some gains in language, her syntax never
approached normal levels
the case of Genie supports a critical period for language acquisition (yet
some point to her gains later in life)
measles can cause mental retardation if contracted during certain fetal
Developmental Methodology
-cross-sectional method compares groups of different ages at the same time
ouseful for assessing age differences
onot useful for examining age changes
the problem is that each age group (cohort) has different life
-longitudinal method compares same group at multiple time points
-sequential studies examine different age groups at multiple time points (reduce cohort
Physical Development
-prenatal period has 3 phases
ogerminal period – 1 to 2 weeks after conception
oembryonic period – 3rd to 8th weeks of gestation
ofetal period – from 9 weeks to birth
-during the embryonic period, the developing fetus is susceptible to toxins
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