Psych 420: Survey of Developmental Psychology
-study of constancy and change through the lifespan- can be looked at through many
interdisciplinary study, psychology, sociology, biology, education.
- either scientific- basic research- aim to increase understanding. not aimed at
solving a particular problem
- or applied- resolving some sort of problem or being applied to a greater
population—clinical psych, or education setting where people aim to use research
findings to increase learning.
-mulitple domains—- they all work together.
learning to crawl is physical but it affects all of the other domains.
Theories- used to draw attention to a subject, also give meaning, guide action towards
Issues theories address
- is development continuous or not?
- one course of development or many?
- what are the roles of nature and nurture?
One course vs. many
-contemporary views think its multi-layered and complex.
-influences by genetics, biology, and environment
-with different combination= different developmental paths.
Nature vs. Nurture
Nature- emphasize parents genetic influence- active at conception, inborn, and
predetermined based on DNA.
Nurture- influence of physical and social world on biological and psychological
-before and after birth
Theorists that emphasize nature emphasize heredity and stress stability. Also stress
stability- little change over time. emphasize early experience.
Theorists that emphasize nurture emphasize experience across lifespan. also stress
change. Believe people are high in plasticity- adaptability.
development is a dynamic system- ongoing, lifelong and also multidimensional and
multidirectional, plastic- open to change based on experience. Theories of Development
6th-15th centuries (midieval)
-childhood separate from adulthood
- children vulnerable
- allowed to be more relaxed.
- puritan belief in original sin- parents believed they needed to civilize children
- strict punishment- if misbehaved recommended they were beaten.
- restrictive clothing.
- john locke: child as “tabula rosa”- blank space
- children are completely shaped by experience and opposed physical
- jean-jacques Rousseau: children “noble savages”
- natural morality
- 4 discrete stages of development- infancy, childhood, late childhood, and
- nature & discontinuous.
- Darwin: evolutionary theory. realized no two individuals alike
- believed development similar across species. animals and humans. drove
research in that area and directed more attention.
- Hall- founder of the child study movement
- development as maturational process
predominant in the early 20th century
- people move through a series of stages
- in each stage confront a conflict
- how conflict is resolved shapes development for the positive or negative.
- sigmund freud.
- parents responsible for managing childs sexual and aggressive drives.
- children move through a series of stages which includes conflicts.
Freud on personality
Id - biological needs and desires. present at birth. crying due to hunger, basic need met,
warm and comfy, shelter
Ego- rational thought, infancy, crying baby sees a bottle, being brought to it and starts
crying. able to rationally control your biological needs. Superego- preschool years, conscience. - develops through interactions child has with
Oral: birth-1 year
-issues: thumb sucking, fingernail biting, overeating, smoking. could cause these issues
- anal: 1-3 should master urine and feces training. too little or too much
- issues could lead to extreme or lack of order and cleanliness.
- phallic: 3-6 genital stimulation. feel attraction to opposite sex
- battle with oedipus and electra complexes ( mother and father attraction)
Latency: 6-11 years sexual calmed.
- sexual instinct calmed . superego develops.
Genital: adolescence to adulthood. - sexual interest reappears
- leads to sex, and desire to raise and have children
- neo- freudian.
- acknowldeges culture.
- conflicts with continuum of responses.
- more of a role of culture
- more contemporary
-challenged psychoanalytic theories. challenged freud and erikson
- focus directly observable events.
watson and raynor, 1920
Classical Conditioning. little albert
- white rat—- neutral response— no fear or response pos or neg
- loud noise- unconditioned— fear response
- paired together- find they no longer need the unconditioned response, the rat become
Skinner: increase or decrease behavior by reinforcements or punishments- operant
Social learning theory emerged as a result.
-built on behaviorism.
- motivation- come from history, future reinforcement or punishment.
- introduces role of cognition -self efficacy- success on a test is due to your own ability and motivation
- behavior modification- combines modeling and conditioning to increase good
Cognitive Developmental Theory
- reinforcers not necessary to guide learning and development
- children construct knowledge through interactions with their environment.
*****look at the rest on bb….. posted . starting on ch 1 page 6
information processing theories.
no stages of development but we are already born with it. emphasizes nature instead of
ethology- lorenz focused on imprinting—- following. imprinting is good bc safety. higher
chance they will be taken care of . promotes survival.
-critical period-if imprinting doesn't occur with a certain amount of time, it doesn't
occur at all. not typically case with humans
sensitive periods- time where development is trying to occur. ex- language
development. young kids are highly plastic. if neglect or hearing loss occurs, you will
-john bowlby- young children try to form attachment to cargiver. different
behaviors exhibited, smiling, grasp fingers, cry. promoting survival.
-socioculture theory- development is culture specific.
—beleifs, cultures, values can be transferred from one generation to next -
-ecological systems theory- different systems interact with each other and change over
Research methods — important for article review assignments.
Methods of data collection
-occur in natural environment*playground, classroom.
- pro: easy to observe everyday behavior
- con:lack control, might see diff behavior based on amount of children.
observer bias- own expectations might influence how you process the behaviors.
- lab setting.
pro: can create environment, and hard to see behaviors; equal treatment.
- can make the situation so everyone has equal oppurtunity.
con:behavior may be atypical. bc the environment is so structured. Observation issues:
- observer infuence:effect of observant on participants behavior.
- observer bias: aware and can over record what they expect to see. a way to prevent
is to use blind observation- not aware of the hypothesis.
- double blind: neither is aware.
-Self -report/ interview method.
-flexible interviews: share thoughts, conversation.
-pro: more natural, flexible.
-con: inaccuracies- ppl want to portray themselves more positive, or even lie. also
difficult to compare
- pro: standardized, easy comparison and to process and analyze.
- con: ppl can report inaccurate and a lack of depth in answers.
-analyze relationship between physiological processes and behavior.
Heart rate- measure attention/ emotions. when they are engaged their heart rate drops.
if distracted/ tired, heart rate will increase. heart rate increases in periods of distress.
- safe for all ages.
- can look at it early and late in life to set up experiments.
- measure electrical activity on the scalp produced by bran.
- examine brain activity over short or long time periods.
benefit: safe for all ages, however it doesn't give much info about where in the brain
the activity is.
MRI: scans produce 3D images of the brain.
- appropriate for all ages.
fMRI : tells more, detects change in blood flow and oxygen to measure changes due to
- not appropriate for young infants.
Near-infrared spectroscopy- NIRS
- infrared light measures blood flow and oxygenation. shine into brain and attempt to
measure changes in blood flow and oxygenation.
- not that strong, only pick up changes towards the surface.
- safe for all ages.
- detailed study of one individual.
- utilize interviews, obsercations, test scores, etc. - complete picture of functioning.
General research desings
- examine relationship between two variables. ex. test scores vs. a childs
- report a correlation coefficient
- based on magnitude.
- direction- pos correlation reports positve relationship.
** correlation does not equal causation.
aimed at testing cause and effect.
- Independent var- manipulated var, expected to cause change.
dependent- expected to be influenced by the IV.
- utilize random assignment- picking random students. and matching- way to take
potential variables and equalize across groups so they don't effect dependent var, IQ.
-field experiments- use random assignment in natural settings.
-natural experiment- quasi-experiment. compare differences that already exist.
Designs for studying development
-Longitudinal- same participants studied repeatedly at different time points and different
-adv: examine patterns and individual differences.
-disadv: biased sampling-certain types of people will volunteer and selective
attrition- participant drop out. Practice effects- idea that if you come in to participate and
do the same task repeatedly, you will see improvement. Also cohort effect- unique
things that make it hard to generalize. ex- school shooting may influence studnets,
making it harder to generalize to other schools.
-Cross-sectional: participants of different ages studied at the same time.
-advantages: more efficient bc less time and consider results sooner.
no selective attrition, practice effects.
-disadvantages: cannot examine individuals trends.
-Sequential design: groups of different aged participants studied repeatedly at different
ages. ( combination of the two)
-advantages: longitudinal and corss-sectional comparisons
-reveals cohort effects
-efficient tracking of age-related changes.
same as longitudinal and cross-sectional, but design helps identify differences.
-children and elderly are vulnerable.
- Protection from harm- cant implement treatment that could be harmful.
- informed consent. - privacy
knowledge of results
- beneficial treatments.
Chapter 2- Genetic and environmental foundations.
-chromosomes:store and transmit genetic info.
-DNA: double stranded molecule; makes chromosomes.
-gene: segment of DNA on chromosome.
Mitosis & Meiosis
-cell division halving number of chromosomes in body cells.
-form gametes=sex cells
-at conception, sperm and ovum form zygote with 46 chromosomes.
-leads to genetic variability.
-process where DNA duplicates itself
-produces new body cells containing the same genetic info.
Gametes- sex cells:sperm and ovum.
zygote- formed when sperm and ovum unite
sex chromosomes- 23rd pair of chromosomes
Patterns of genetic inheritance
-alleles: forms of the same gene on a pair of chromosomes.
- appear at eh same place on chromosome.
-inherit one from each parent.
- can be dominant or recessive.
homozygous-inherited alleles are the same. or heterozygous- alleles are differnt.
- dominant expressed if present
- recessive expressed if paired together.
- carriers: 1 dominant, 1 recessive.
-each B/b represents one allele for eye color.
-shows possible interactions and makes predictions.
Genotype vs. Phenotype
-individuals genetic make-up -directly observable
- gene/environment interaction.
-cannot metabolize phenylalanine -causes severe CNS damage
-treat through diet
-can achieve average intelligence and live and average life.
-picture is 25 % chance of pku
-CNS degeneration- beginning at 35 years of age. occurs fairly early
-as a result, muscular coordination, mental deterioration, personality changes, no
treatment, death 10-20 years after onset
Sickle Cell Anemia
-red blood cells sickle.
-oxygen deprication, pain, swelling, tissue damage.
-susceptible to infections.
-treat with blood transfusions, painkillers.
incomplete dominance: both alleles expressed;results in intermediate trait
heterozygous affected at high altitudes/after intense exercise.
-africa and malaria.
-harmful allele is carried on the X chromosome.
-more likely to affect males
*females protected by 2nd x chromosomes, males arent.
Duchenne muscular dystrophy
-x-linked, recessive. only males.
-degenerative muscle disease 1 out of every 3,000
-lose muscle tone overtime and loses ability to walk
-death often occurs due to respiratory infection/weak heart muscle
-blood fails to clot normally.
-severe internal bleeding
-treat with blood transfusions, safety precautions. relatively normal life can be leaded
Genetic imprinting and Mutation
-allele is chemically marked, results in activation.
-mother or father
-often temporary in transmission.
-sudden permanent change in DNA segment
-germline:gametes, passed to next gen. -somatic: body cells, any time in life.
-genetic cuase, no family history.
-mental retardation, obesity, low levels of sex hormones.
-treat through diet, hormone replacement
Fragile X sydnrome
-affect 1/4000 males and 1/6000 females
-most common cause of inherited mental retardation.
-most from mistakes during meiosis
-chromosome pair not separated/part falls off
-failure of 21st pair to separate during meiosis
-mental retardation, slow motor develeopment, reduced brain size.
-male inherits extra y chromosome
-normal testosterone and sex development
-females with no 2nd sex chromosome
-thryroid and heart abnormalities
-impaired spatial intelligence
-many genes determine characteristic
-complex, much unknown.
The period of the zygote
-embryonic disk: inner cells, become the organism.
-trophoblast: outer cells, protective covering
Implantation: days 7-9, the blastocyst burrows into the uterine lining Placenta and Umbilical Cord
-forms after 2 weeks
-protective membrane that surrounds the amnion
-allows food and oxygen to enter and waste products to be carried away.
-prevents mothers and babies blood from mixing
-delivers blood to and removes waste from developing organism
The period of the Embryo
Third week 3 layers of cells form:
-Ectoderm:becomes nervous system and skin
-mesoderm: muscles skeleton, cirvuulatory sytstem
-endoderm: digestive system, lungs, urinary tract, glands
The fetus: 3rd month, 1st trimester
-Organize & connect
-organs, muscles, NS
-New motor movements
-fingernails, toenails, tooth buds, eyelids
-sex is evident by 12th week
The fetus: second trimesters
-Mother can feel movement (17-20 weeks)
-Fetus develops vernix- protects skin from chapping in amniotic fluid
and lanugo:white, down hair covering body.
- advances in brain growth.
-most neurons have formed
-glial cells (support) are being formed
- new behaviors.
fetus still too young to survive child birth
The third trimester
Age of viability: 22-26 weeks- age that they can survive to be born
- baby can first survive.
Cerebral cortex enlarges and grooves appear.
Fetus spends more time awake