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Week 18 - Social Development

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PSYC 100
Dr.Ada Mullett

Week 18 Notes – What factors influence social development? How do factors like role models, parent-child interactions, sex, gender, and friendship influence social development?  Social environment plays a huge role in our development. We observe and follow models, and learn from friends, family, teachers, etc.  The social brain theory attempts to explain the evolution of intelligence; individuals with greatest cognitive ability will outsmart their competitors  First way we learn appropriate/inappropriate behaviour is through parenting (rules and how they’re enforced)  Inductive Discipline: guiding behaviour introducing appropriate limits and setting up reasonable consequences while also explaining why (promotes prosocial behaviour) Parenting Styles  Diana Baumrind classified parents into four parenting styles depending on demandingness (expectations) and responsiveness (support and meeting needs)  Authoritative: unlikely to use physical discipline, lays out rules with explanations, listens to arguments, allows some freedom (high demand, high response)  Authoritarian: disciplines with threats and punishments, physical discipline, expects and praises complete obedience (high demand, low response)  Permissive/Indulgent: believe children learn best on their own, grant a great amount of freedom (low demand, high response)  Rejection-Neglectful: more engaged in meeting their own needs than those of their children (low demand, low response)  Some believe animals actively teach their young, while this is controversial we can be sure that the young observe and learn either way  Teacher models – learner observes – learner improves  Meerkats teach their young how to kill scorpions by first giving them scorpions with removed stingers. This is only a response to different calls though, not a sign of complex thought  Konrad Lorenz studied ‘fixed action patterns’ like imprinting (rapid form of learning, typically occurring in a restricted time window (often birth), that allows an animal to recognize another animal, person, or thing as an object to be emulated and followed)  Children don’t imprint, but experience a similar phenomenon called attachment (social and emotional bond between infant and caregiver that spans both time and space) Stages of Infant-Caregiver Separation  John Bowlby realized that when children are separated from their parents, they go through four stages: o Pre-Attachment (birth to 6 weeks) infants are completely dependent, but don’t distress when someone new takes care of them o Attachment-in-the-Making (6 weeks to 6-8 months) starts showing preferential treatment, begins to form expectations for parent-child relationship o Clear-Cut Attachment (6-8 months to 18 months) seeks comfort from caregivers and shows real distress when not present o Reciprocal Relationship Phase (18 months to 24 months) more comfortable spending time away from caregivers, and the relationship now relies on both parties to actively maintain it  Harry Harlow attempted to prove Bowlby’s theory against ‘drive reduction theory,’ which stated that infants cry when separated from caregivers because they are dependent on them to satisfy psychological drives  He used inanimate objects as replacement mothers for monkeys, the mother with felt was more popular than the wire mother with food  Contact Comfort: comfort that primate baby derives from a close physical contact with something soft and warm  Monkeys raised with felt mothers did not benefit from responsiveness and grew to be anti-social and aggressive Mother-Child Relationship in Strange Situations  Mary Ainsworth (Bowlby’s student) studies mother-child relationships in ‘strange situations’  Developed four stages of attachment: o Secure Attachment: positively reacts to stranger when caregiver is present, but unhappy when caregiver leaves. Displays “secure base” behaviour o Insecure-Resistant Attachment: insecure throughout, are not even comforted when caregivers return o Disorganized/Disoriented Attachment: contradictory behaviour, wanted comfort from caregiver but at the same time fearful of them o Insecure-Avoidant Attachment: no strong bond with caregiver, may not care when they leave but, if upset, may be comforted by stranger. Largely ignores caregiver Temperament  Temperament: each infant’s individual pattern of behaviour and emotional reactions, based on: o Activity Level: movement o Rhythmicity: biological predictability o Approach/Withdrawal: response to unfamiliar stimuli o Threshold of Responsiveness: intensity of stimulus required to activate response o Intensity of Reaction: level of response o Attention Span: duration of time spent on activity o Distractibi
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