HLTC23 Lecture Notes – Child Health and Development
Office Hours are Wednesdays from 11 to 12
Laura will let us know what time is best for her during office hours. On Campus Mondays and
Hand in assignments through turn it in.
Lecture 1 – Framing Childhood & a Biological Perspective & Genes with the Environment & WHO
Make sure you have an understanding of the Ecological Model for the Assignment.
Child Development Stages
The WHO definition of child is 0 – 8 years. In our course it will be about kids from prenatal
stages all the way to puberty (in general).
Look over and study the provided chart.
Impacts on health as a child don’t always go away. Even if it may seem that way it still does go
onto one’s adolescence.
Different Environment cause Different Outcomes
People are different they go through different exposures and cause differences.
Influences as a child affect health as a child and in the future too.
Healthy children do much better in life.
Scope of the Course
Contextual environment is the social environment around a child (socio-economic factors). Is
the school they attend equipped well . . .
Looking at a global perspective for the assignment. Epigenetics the environment one lives in
changes the expression of genes
Genome – everything that constitutes the genetics in an organism. 23 pairs of chromosomes,
made of nucleotides that code for specific proteins.
Human genome contain 30,000 + genes.
A locus is looked at when looking for an issue in a specific gene on a chromosome
Genes are important because they make proteins that are coded via RNA
Proteins make up the cells essentially. Many different functions. They are involved in direct cell
activity (antibodies, growth). Proteins affect gene activity, they aren’t changing the gene itself
but rather the expression. Epigenetics is affected by the external environment.
Proteins made of 20 types of amino acids, these are stored inside the cell.
Genes and Human Behaviour
Baker looks at 3 aspects: elevation of plats, PKU conditions, and human intelligence. Phenomena that Affect Gene/ Environment Interactions
Developmental noise – cannot be explained
Gene/Environment Correlations – for example is a child is born with the genes for being tall. If
the child grows up having healthy foods for growing this is considered passive. Other way
around if they have the gene but they are actively pursue healthy foods in an environment that
doesn’t have healthy foods, this is considered active.
Developmental pathways – walking, or heading off to school. . . events in a person’s life that take them
Improving the state of early child development
Infections, obesity and so on can affect health across in the life course if occurs in childhood.
Every child has the right to develop in a healthy way
Look into the Millennium Developmental Goals. (Read this, we are not close to the target.)
Which environment? Family, Government, Neighboring . . .
The gradient effect – people say higher income better health. Higher income results in better
incomes. (think of education)
Stunted – didn’t grow there best capability.
Focus on inequities.
Positive Feedback Loop – if people are poor they will have poor outcomes and this is passed
onto there next generations. Basically a cycle that has to be broken.
Lecture 2 – Growth and Development: the ecological model of child development
Why are children vulnerable to the environment?
Brain development is not completed at birt