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PSYC18H3 Lecture Notes - Stimulus Control

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Gerald Cupchik

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PSYC18 Chapter 8 Development of Emotions in Childhood
Emotion is the first human language; the first thing we do when we’re born into
this world is cry.
Maclean (1993)
- Vocal sounds during evolution were meaningful; they indicate the start of a
new form of adaptation e.g. mammal-like reptiles began to become to
become mammals, as social cooperation started to emerge among
Emotion in the first year of life
-Emotional development = social development
Kopp and Neufeld (2003)
- trace the patterns of research on infant emotions from the 1930s to recent
times, as well as include the roles of emotions in social life
-it’s important to think of emotions like there is a small set of primary emotions
Tomkins (1962)
- proposed that each emotion originates as an innate package with its own
neural program
- emotional then must be physical, visible signs of inner programs
-as for child development, even though in the few days after birth, there is little
differentiation, the concept is that as our bodies develop and proceeds certain
emotions are expressed in ways that others can pick up
Babies’ expressions have received much interest of researchers because of its link
to work on adult facial expressions
Steiner et al. (2001)
- demonstrate that human infants’ expressions of sour tastes are similar to
those of other primates
When babies turn 2 months old, adults are good at picking out expressions of
happiness in their faces
-there’s two schemes for analyzing babies’ facial expressions: Izard’s MAX ( then
later modified as AFFEX) and Oster’s Baby-FACs- an adaptation for infants of
Ekman and Friesen’s (1978) coding scheme for adult expressions, FACS
-social smiles don’t emerge until after the 1st month or 2, before that babies
occasionally give off smiles but they also happen when they are sleeping so it’s not
In the second moth, smiles begin to occur with gentle stroking, by 3rd they happen
frequently when interacting with a caregiver
By 3rd month of birth, children smile in response to same kinds of events that make
older kids and adults happy- attention, invitations to play, and other pleasurable
social encounters
Lewis Alessandri, and Sullivan (1990)
- smiling happens when infants master skills
- they placed babies in an infant seat and attached a string to their arm- when
they pull the string and the music turned on the babies show happiness
(learned a new skill)) as in adults, mastering a skill made the children( of
2,4,6, and 8 months old) happy
Malastesta and Haviland (1982)
- found that when infants showed interest in playing with their parents,
parents’ expressions of interest also increased
Huebner and Izard( 1988)
- showed pictures of infants’ facial expressions to mothers: the mothers said
the expression of positive emotion or of interest would make them feel good,
and that they would talk, play, and interact with the baby, and show love
- indicates that the smiles of infants draw adults into affectionate interactions
-with negative emotions, some researchers accept that if a facial expression meets
coding criteria then a specific emotion is inferred
-researchers using Izard’s MAX coding system have seen expressions of anger,
sadness, and pain-distress in 3 month olds
-other researchers like Oster et al (1992), argued that babies’ negative expressions
show only undifferentiated distress, whereas other researches like Izard and
Malatesta (1987) argued expressions of anger, fear, and sadness can be seen from
early on
-studies show early expression of distinct negative emotions is more problematic
-with negative emotions, some researchers take it that when facial expression
meets coding criteria then a specific emotion is inferred
- to be more exact, distinct emotions should strictly be inferred if a specific facial
expression is made in the context of an appropriate elicitor
Sullivan and Lewis *2003)
- studied 3 kinds of frustration: loss of stimulation (extinction), reduction in
contingent stimulation (partial reinforcement), and loss of stimulus control
(noncontingency) all these conditions showed 5 to 5 month olds increased
arm movements and showed anger expressions coded by MAX