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PSYC 4070 Exam 1 Book Notes (got 93% on the test)

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PSYC 4070
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PSYC4070Exam1BookNotesChapter 1SummaryoDefining DevelopmentThe study of human development is a science that seeks to understand how people change over timeSometimes these changes are lineargradual steady and predictablebut more often they are notChange may be small or large caused by something seemingly insignificant like the flap of a butterflys wings or something large that affects people in unexpected waysThe dynamicsystems perspective on development is now pervasive in the study of lifespan development evident in the five characteristics of development and in every topic in this textDevelopment is neither static nor localized it is the result of interactions among all the systems microsystems macrosystems and exosystems that impinge on each personBronfenbrenner was among many who emphasized the bioecological approach to developmental studyoFive Characteristics of DevelopmentDevelopment is multidirectional multicontextual multicultural multidisciplinary and plasticIt is the product of dynamic systems so that any change affects an interconnected system and any person affects all the other people in a family or social groupEach individual develops within unique historical cultural and socioeconomic contexts Life is quite different for a lowincome child in a traditional culture for instance than for a middleclass child in a modern multicultural societyOne way to subdivide development is by domains or general aspects of growth and changeThis division can be thought of as biosocial cognitive and psychosocial or even body mind and social selfAll development affects all domains at once as the dynamicsystems perspective makes clearTo understand development it is necessary to compare many cultures and use research from many disciplinesNevertheless because each person has unique genes and experiences contexts do not determine an individuals developmentbut they always influence itPlasticity means that change is always possible but is never unrestricted Childhood becomes the foundation for later growthPSYC4070Exam1BookNotesoDevelopmental Study as a ScienceThe five steps of the scientific method lead researchers to question assumptions and to gather data to test conclusionsAlthough far from infallible the scientific method helps researchers avoid biases and guides them in asking questionsCommonly used research methods are scientific observation the experiment the survey and the case studyEach method has strengths and weaknessesThe most reliable conclusions can be drawn when various methods all reach similar conclusions and when replications using many subjects in diverse cultures confirm the resultsTo study change over time scientists use three research designs crosssectional research comparing people of different ages longitudinal research studying the same people over time and crosssequential research combining the other two methodsEach method has advantagesoCautions from ScienceA correlation shows that two variables are related but does not prove that one variable causes anotherIn qualitative research information is recoded without being quantified or translated into numbersQualitative research best captures the nuances of individual lives but quantitative research is easier to replicate and verifyEthical behavior is crucial in all sciencesNot only must participants be protected but results must be clearly reported and understoodScientists must be mindful of the implications of their researchAppropriate application of scientific research depends partly on the training and integrity of the scientistsThe most important ethical question is whether the research that is critically needed is being designed conducted analyzed and publishedKey TermsoScience of human developmentthe science that seeks to understand how and why people change or remain the same over timeoEmpiricalbased on observation experience or experiment not theoreticaloDynamicsystems theorya view of human development as always changingLife is the product of ongoing interaction between the physical and emotional being and between the person and every aspect of his or her environment including the family and society Flux is constant and each change affects all the othersoEcologicalsystems approacha vision of how human development should be studied with the person considered in all the contexts and interactions that constitute a lifeMicrosystemsfamily peer groups classroom neighborhood etcMesosystemsinteractions among microsystems
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