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Psychological & Brain Sciences
CAS PS 241
Stacey Doan

DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY 2 • Attachment – the strong tie we have for special people in our lives that leads us to experience pleasure when we interact with them and to be comforted by their nearness during times of stress • The psychoanalytic perspective and behaviorism both view feeding as the central context for attachment • Research indicates that although feeding is an important context for a close relationship, attachment does not depend on hunger satisfaction • BOWLBY’S ETHOLOGICAL THEORY OF ATTACHMENT o Preattachment – birth to 6 weeks. Built in signals, bring babies into close contact o Attachment-in-the-making – 6-8 weeks. Respond differently to a different caregiver. o Clear-cut attachment – separation anxiety. If you are attached to one person it will be distressing to leave that person o Formation of a reciprocal relationship • TYPES OF SECURITY OF ATTACHMENT o Secure attachment – 60%  Use the parents as a secure base  Actively seek contact with the parent when he or she returns o Avoidant attachment – 15%  Seems unresponsive to the parent  Slow to greet the parent upon reunion o Resistant attachment – 10%  Seek closeness to the parent  Distressed and angry when the parent returns o Disorganized/disoriented attachment – 15%  Pattern reflects the greatest insecurity  At reunion, often show confused, contradictory behaviors  Really mixed feelings about their parents • MARYAINSWORTH – STRANGE SITUATION o Mom plays with child and then leaves the room. A stranger comes in and see how child responds. o So like at age 4, children will go with random people and be really open. But this is kind of maladaptive and dangerous. Don't see this trait in romanian orphans • Internal working model – a set of expectations about the availability of attachment figures, their likelihood of providing support during times of stress, and the self’s interaction with those figure o Becomes a guide for all future close relationships o Your internal working model for going to restaurants is that you order, they give food, then you pay • Attachment is highly influential in school and development of person • Heritability of attachment is virtually nil HARLOW • Monkey will prefer cloth mother over wired mother • Then monkey is able to explore the environment around him without anxiety. For newborns, touch is most important • Attachment was not about physical/feeding • “better late than never” does not apply. Impact of maternal deprivation could not be reversed after 90 days (about 6 months in humans) BRAIN DEVELOPMENT IN EARLY CHILDHOOD • Significant brain growth between ages 2 and 6 o Grows to 90% of adult size o Reshaping and refining o Overabundance of synaptic connections supports plasticity. Suffering from brain damage early on makes it be repaired • Cognitive skills also increase o Physical coordination, perception, attention, memory, language, logical thinking, and imagination • At age 2 is the peak where the primary auditory cortex, wernickes, and brocas area has the highest density in neural connections • Start to have lateralization. Differences in rate of development between the two hemispheres suggest they continue to lateralize during early childhood PIAGET’S COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENT • Sensorimotor – from 0-2 o The infant explores the world through direct sensory and motor contact. Separation anxiety and object permanence develop during this stage o Circular reactions o A-Not-B error. They tend to reach for the same place if given two selections. One reason is lack of impulse control. o No mental representations – no internal, mental depictions of objects, people, events, in formation o Violation of expectation method  Unexpected event because the carrot is supposed to show in the little window  Criticism: you are only measuring looking time and its hard to conclude that children do have object permanence because they are surprised that they don't see the top of the carrot • Preoperational o Children use symbols and images to represent objects o At this stage they are egocentric – cannot represent other people’s thoughts  They cant draw pictures from other people’s perspective, and when they talk to friends they talk to themselves o Doesn’t understand constancy  Centration – focus on one aspect and neglect others  Irreversibility – cannot mentally reverse a set of steps • Like if a pour water from a tall bottle back, it should be the same o They can reason but is not very logical o Piagetian class inclusion problem  Are there more red flowers or blue flowers vs. more flowers or blue flowers? o Representation – children at age 2 don’t know how to use a map to find hidden things in a room, but children at 2.5 can • Concrete operational o Understand that there is object constancy o Understand there is object permanence • Formal operational Study of something • 1. Show deceptive object • 2. Reveal true nature • 3. Requests re apparent and reality questions real properties o “I want to take a picture of Teddy with something that looks like a crayon. Can you help me?” o “I spilled some water and need something to wipe up some spilled water. Can you help me?” o So if you ask them first what it is and then to give you an object, they will only get it right half the time. But if you ask to just give you the object, where they give a non verbal answer, they will tend to do better. Children can respond behaviorally but not verbally. PIAGET’S THEORY: schemes • Psychological structures – organized ways of making sense of experience • Change with age o Action-based sensorimotor patterns o Later move to “thinking before acting” pattern – creative and deliberate • Building schemes o Adaptation – building schemes through direct interaction with environment o Assimilation – using current schemes to interpret external world o Accommodation – adjusting old schemes and creating new ones to better fit environment Equilibrium and disequilibrium • Use assimilation during equilibrium • Disequilibrium prompts accommodation • Organization o Internal rearranging and linking schemes CRITISICSM OF PIAGET • Many experts refute preoperational stage • Piaget’s stages too strict o Need flexible stage approach o Assuming things at this age at this time • Piaget assumes abrupt change o Most experts believe change is gradual o VYGOTSKY • Founder of an original holistic theory of human cultural and biosocial development • Major theme: social interaction plays a fundamental role in the development of cognition VYCOGTSKY’S SOCIOCULTURAL THEORY • Development occurs on two levels: o External or through social interaction o Internalized • Zone of proximal development o Scaffolding supports children’s learning – some things children can’t do themselves. But they can do more advanced things if they have an adult to help them o Assisted discovery and peer collaboration also help children learn • Children’s private speech – talking to yourself, like when reading something really hard o Piaget called this “egocentric speech”, viewed it as foundation for all higher cognitive processes o When the task is moderately difficult, children are most likely to engage in private speech • Helps guide behavior – used more when tasks are difficult, after errors, or when confused o Gradually becomes more silent – kids do it more than adults. And over time it becomes internalized EDUCATIONAL PRINCIPLES • Piaget: sensitivity to children’s readiness to learn o Developmentally appropriate practices o Don't try to speed up the development • Acceptance of individual differences o Same steps, different rates • Vygotsky: learners should be provided with socially rich environments in which to explore knowledge domains with their peers, teachers and outside experts • Discourses, discussions, collaborative writing, and group problem-solving in mixed age peer groups can scaffold students’ evolving understanding and cognitive growth THEORY OF MIND • What do children understand about other minds o 18 months old seems to understand that another person has a different desire • FALSE BELIEF TASK (gold standard for theory of mind) o you pass this test, it is thought that you possess a theory of mind o so sally puts ball in basket 1, and anne puts ball in basket 2 after sally has left. Then sally comes back and you ask the child where sally will look for the ball. If the child says sally will look in basket 2, then the child does not have theory of mind. o They cant understand that someone else will believe something different from them. o They will normally pass the test at age 4 EMOTION • Development of emotion o 1-3 months: disgust, joy, sadness o 4-9 months: anger, fear, surprise o 12-24 months: embarrassment, shame, guilt, pride  These emotions require that you have an understanding of other people • Still-face paradigm o Suggests that in early development, children have a generalized expectation of social and emotional interactions • Stimulusactivates an affect programleads to feeling, facial muscle movements, vocal acoustics, peripheral nervous system, and behavior o Criticism: too specific, brain doesn't work that way. If its that specific we should be able to find it in the brain but we cant • Dimensional – you can only say something is high/low activation or high/low arousal o Negative, low arousal: depression or sadness o Negative, high arousal: anger • Emotions and their functions o Interest – orienting/exploration. Kids who show more interest tend to be sma
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