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PSYC 2450 (267)
Chapter 2

Chapter 2

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Department
Psychology
Course
PSYC 2450
Professor
Nanita Mohan
Semester
Fall

Description
11-09-18 10:10 PM Psyc 2450DE Chapter 2 Summary Basic Theoretical Issues What is a theory? • A set of logically related concepts or statements, which seks to describe and explain development and to predict what kinds of behaviour might occur under certain conditions. What is a hypothesis? • A possible explanation for phenomena, used to predict the outcome of research. - The way theorists explain development depends in part on the way they view two basic issues: • Whether children are active or passive in their own development. o John Locke – A young child is like a ‘blank slate’ on which society ‘writes’. (Mechanistic Model: People are like machines that react to environmental input E.g., Fill a car with gas, turn on ignition, accelerate, and car will move) o Jean Jacques Rousseau – Children are ‘noble savages’ who develop according to their own positive natural tendencies unless corrupted by society. (Organismic Model: Sees people as active, growing organisms that set their own development in motion. Development occurs in a sequence of qualitatively different stages) o We now know that both views are too simplistic and both are correct. • Whether development is continuous or occurs in stages. o Mechanistic theorists believe development is continuous, like walk or crawling up a ramp, predicting later behaviours from earlier ones. o Organismic theorists emphasize qualitative change and see development as occurring in a series of distinct stages, like stair steps. Each stage involved coping with different problems and developing abilities. Each stage builds on the previous and prepares child for next stage.  Most early theoretical pioneers believed in the Organismic -stage approach (Freud, Erikson, Piaget).  Mechanistic approach gained popularity in the 60s with the increasing popularity of Jo hn B. Watson’s learning theories.  Today much attention is focused on the biological and evolutionary bases of behaviour.  Developmental scientists today search for specific types of behaviour that show continuity or lack of continuity and what processes are involved in each.  Instead of being active or passive, today we believe we are bi-directional: people change their world even as the world changes them. Theoretical Perspectives Technique Stages Theoretical Important Basic Belief Causal Used Perspective Theories Emphasis? Psychoanalytic -Freud’s psychosexual -Behaviour is controlled by - Clinical - Yes -Innate factors Perspective theory (Passive) powerful unconscious urges. observation modified by (For both experience. -Erikson’s psychosocia-Personality is influenced btheories) -Interaction or theory (Active) society and develops through -Yes innate and a series of crises experiential factors Learning -Behaviourism, or - People are responders; Experimental -No -Experience Perspective traditional learning environment controls procedures (for theory (Pavlov, behaviour. both theories) Skinner, Watson) [Passive] -Social Learning -Children learn in a social -No -Experienced (social-cognitive) context by observing and modified by theory (Bandura) imitating models. innate factors [active and passive] Cognitive -Piaget’s cognitive- -Qualitative changes in -Flexible -Yes -Interaction of Perspective stage theory thought occur between interviews; innate and (Active) infancy & adolescence. meticulous experiential Person is active initiator oobservation factors (For both development theories) -Information -Human beings are -Lab research -No Processing Theory processors of symbols (Active and Passive) Co
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