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Chapter 9

PSYA02: Ch. 9 and 10 Notes (Psychological Science: Modeling Scientific Literacy 1st edition)

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Alexandra Pohlod

Ch. 9.1 Measuring Aptitude and Intelligence Intelligence-ability to think, understand, reason & cognitively adapt to/overcome obstacles- >intelligence reflects not just how much is known but how person recognizes/solves problems Achievement & Aptitude-testing mental ability comes in various forms to serve many purposes, achievement tests-measure knowledge & thinking skills that an individual has acquired- >quizzes/tests in uni courses are achievement tests but on a larger scale, nation-wide achievement tests given to students yearly, measures whether individuals, schools, demographics have mastered subject matter appropriate to some grade level aptitude tests-measure person's potential to perform well on specific range of tasks, ex. SAT's claim to measure test taker potential as student, Armed services measure aptitude for military, *achievement tests measure current abilities & aptitude tests predict future performance Psychometrics-measurement of psychological traits & abilities, including personality, attitudes & intelligence, items on tests/surveys are careful constructed & evaluated for relevance to psychological trait supposedly measured ->*recall validity-degree to which test actually measures trait ability it’s intended to measured ->validity...how do we know SAT really measures success in college?->to answer this, look for predictive validity-degree to which test predicts future performance, studies were conducted to prove positive correlation b/t SAT scores & 1st year GPA, but there are other factors that influence high GPA, correlation is weaker after 1st year college ->*recall reliability-measurement of degree to which test produces consistent results, evaluate through test-retest reliability, research showed that students taking SAT 2nd time generally increase scores by small amount but increase is not b/c of changes in intelligence, t/f SAT is not perfectly reliable b/c of change, HOWEVER, b/c change is small, it does shows some degree of reliability Standardization & Norms-standardized test-has set of ?'s/problems administered & scored uniformly across large #'s of ppl., allows for comparisons across individuals, *important testing component -intelligence test scores can be compared b/c of norms-stats that allow ppl. to be evaluated relative to typical or standard score, most intelligence tests, norm (avg. score) is 100 -*recall standard deviation-measures variability around a mean, for intelligence tests, this can be seen as typical # of points b/t person's score & mean score, can be thought of as the avg. distance away from avg. Percentile rank-% of scores below certain point, ex. IQ score of 100 percentile rank of 50% while score of 85, 16% (of pop. scores below 85) -generally, a norm is established by giving test to many ppl. & then calculating mean/standard deviation, numbers can be adjusted so that avg./standard deviation is easy to use -normed tests with 1 set of ppl. may not represent another so many cases, test is renormed about every 10 yrs. to ensure mean & standard deviation are the same Approaches to intelligence testing-Stanford-Binet Test->Alfred Binet & Theodore Simon developed method of evaluating child's academic achievement at school, work resulted in achievement test->measure of how well child performed at various cognitive tasks relative to other children of his age ->the test measured mental age-average age or typical test score for specific chronological age instead of intelligence, ex. a 7-yr.-old with mental age of 7 is considered average b/c it matches with chronological age but 10-yr.-old that got held back might have mental age of 8, the same as avg. 8-yr.-old score->t/f with this info, teachers know that student needs extra help to bring mental up to chrono. age Stanford-Binet test-intended to measure genetic intelligence Intelligence Quotient (IQ)-measurement in which person's mental age is divided by person's chronological age & then multiplied by 100, ex. 10 yr. old with mental age of 7 has IQ of 7/10 x 100 = 70, replaced mental age idea with # that measure's person's ability -to many, mental age provides the opportunity to catch up b/c student is described as behind but as for IQ, it seems as if it's a diagnosis of a permanent condition->no amount of help/education will affect student, IQ will stay the same throughout life Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS)-most commonly used intelligence test by adolescents/adults->provides single IQ score for each test taker (Full Scale IQ) & also breaks intelligence into General Ability Index (GAI) & Cognitive Proficiency Index (CPI) ->GAI-verbal understanding & perceptual reasoning, measures person's abilities without speed of problem solving/decision-making ->CPI-working memory & perceptual speed, greater working memory capacity/processing speed allow more cognitive resources dedicated to reasoning & problem solving -many original standardized tests required knowledge of test developer's culture/language, t/f ppl. from different cultures/social classes were at disadvantage -psychologists reasoned that intelligence is universal, so ppl. who didn't speak English shouldn't be penalized->Raven's Progressive Matrices-intelligence test emphasizing problems that are not bounded by particular language/culture_>main set of tasks involves test takers seeing shape & color patterns within matrix & determining which shape/colour would complete pattern ->2 abilities key to intelligent behaviour, identifying & extracting important info (deductive reasoning) & then applying it to new situations (reproductive reasoning) -*recall Francis Galton: explained eminence by good breeding->some people are genetically gifted while others aren't, inheritance is better prediction of intelligence than practice/effort- >he measured intelligence through anthropometrics-(measurement of ppl.), refers to method of measuring physical/mental variation in humans->presented series of perceptual tests to many ppl. but didn't seem to correlate with eminence as he had predicted -modern approach to measuring intelligence->working memory->researchers have noted high correlations b/t working memory capacity & standardized reasoning tests, working memory tests measure how well one can hold instructions/info in memory while completing problem- solving skills -some modern psychologists believe intelligence & working memory are the same, perhaps working memory capacity is expression of intelligence b/c it allows complex reasoning strategies to be used in short-term storage ->working memory processes help ppl. ignore distracting/irrelevant info, also allows intelligent behaviour to emerge ->working memory tasks seem to tap into abilities that allow ppl. to solve problems/express our mental abilities Brain size & intelligence-brain-based approach measuring intelligence depends on assumption that thinking occurs in brain so larger brain=greater intelligence, some studies on this highly flawed, racial prejudice, Caucasian males the smartest of humans b/c of large brains ->brain size & regions->feature of human brain is convoluted (folded) surface ->called gyri->compromise outer part of cerebral cortex, study concluded that higher the score on WAIS, the more convoluting seen across cortex regions -rmb. that other factors account for individual difference in intelligence like nutrition & physical health Ch. 9.2 Understanding Intelligence *recall: definition of intelligence combines ability to think, understand, reason & cognitively adapt to & overcome obstacles Intelligence as a Single, General Ability ->left side scenario gets ppl. to think intelligence in terms of trait everyone can apply to all sorts of problems, ppl. who rate high in general intelligence should do well at all sorts of tasks, low in general intelligence likely to struggle across the same tasks Factor analysis-statistical technique that reveals similarities among wide variety of items, ex. different measures such as vocabulary, reading comprehension & verbal reasoning might overlap enough to form a "language ability" factor ->ex. if person does well in algebra, he/she is likely to do well in calculus, so according to this perspective (assuming intelligence as single factor), someone skilled in math subjects is also skilled in reading/writing general intelligence (g)-intelligence is basic cognitive trait comprising ability to learn, reason & solve problems regardless of their nature->evident in college admission tests/wide range of psychologist tests ->person with high g score could use general intelligence to solve any problem in any field; g is related to # of outcomes ppl. seek->predicts psychological well-being, income, successful long- term relationships Testing for Fluid and Crystallized Intelligence-intelligence seems to be divided into at least 2 categories ->some types of problem solving & thinking fall under fluid intelligence (Gf)-type of intelligence used to adapt to new situations & solve new problems without relying on prior knowledge- >may include pattern recognition & geometric puzzle tasks like Raven Matrices Crystallized intelligence (Gc)-intelligence that relies on extensive experience/knowledge & t/f tends to be relatively stable->this measures vocab, similarity/difference, reading comprehension...all require prior knowledge ->recognizing distinction of Gf & Gc helps reduce stereotypes & expectations about intelligence in older age, the theory that more than one type of intelligence exists can explain differences in test performance at any age Intelligence as Multiple Specific Abilities->go back to the table, right side scenario emphasizes multiple specific abilities, each ability has one specific function that may be unrelated to another ability's function ->but each mental ability contributes to overall thought -arguments against general intelligences, there are 7 different clusters known as primary mental abilities ->person may experience a head injury & lose one ability without any loss in other aspects of intelligence ->savants-ppl. with low mental capacity in most domains but extraordinary abilities in other specific areas (such as music, math, art...)->if intelligence was one ability, then it's not expected that such brilliance in one area & impaired functioning in others ->psychologists find ppl. vary in terms of physical/social/artistic skills not well explained by g Triarchic theory of intelligence->consists of 3 domains, analytical intelligence, practical intelligence & creative intelligence ->analytical intelligence-verbal, mathematical problem-solving type, close to academic achievement concept & intelligence idea measured by g ->practical intelligence-ability to address real-world problems encountered in daily life (work context, family life...) ->creative intelligence-ability to create new ideas to solve problems, artist...scientist...must conceive good scientific hypotheses & ways to test them Multiple intelligences-model developed by Howard Gardner, claiming that 8 different forms of intelligence exist, each independent from the others Learning styles-hypothesis that ppl. are fundamentally different in how they best acquire info, visual/auditory, reading/writing, tactile/kinesthetic, educators claim students learn best using their own personal style ->however studies have shown learning according to best learning style does not benefit b/c regardless, person needs to store meaning of info to retain it long term -researchers have found scores among many types of cognitive tests are positively correlated, which supports the one-ability hypothesis but correlations occur in the population, not in any specific individual ->some ppl. may have unusual differences in ability, low math intelligence but high language intelligence for example...mathematical & verbal abilities are different but they share at least some common source -general consensus is that intelligence can be traced to g, within it, verbal & mathematical intelligence can be separated ->*to understand this more, use this analogy: chimps & gorillas are 2 different types of animals but both are primates, t/f they are mammals but they are distinct at some levels & similar on others ->*the ability to understand written text & to produce it can be different intelligences, BUT they are both forms of verbal intelligence, t/f both contribute to g The Flynn Effect: is everyone getting smarter? Flynn Effect-refers to steady population level increases in intelligence test scores over time ->is the younger generation getting smarter than earlier generations or are younger generations better at taking tests?->children in wealthy countries are taking standardized tests with more frequency so it’s possible practice adds up over time ->technological advances could explain Flynn Effect, increased exposure to computers & TV enhance ability to handle visual tasks/be more comfortable around them, however Flynn Effect could be reversing in wealthier countries while starting to take off in developing nations Ch. 9.3 Heredity, Environment, and Intelligence Intelligence and Heredity *recall: Francis Galton wanted to prove certain families were intellectually superior b/c of inherited genes, behavioural genetics-examines how genes, enviro. & interaction influence behaviour/cognition, Human Genome Project, modern brain imaging methods have allowed current psychologists to study genetics, genes & genome -3 layered approach->genetics: to what degree is intelligence an inherited trait? ->genes: if intelligence does have a genetic component, which genes are involved? ->genome: if it can be identified which genes contribute to intelligence, then how do they contribute to brain development/function? -research has shown that as the degree of genetic relatedness increases, so does similarity in IQ scores -however environment is also important factor in intelligence, offspring are more similar to parent with whom they grow up with -identical twins & intelligence scores have strong correlation (0.85) when raised together, higher than fraternal twins, even when identical twins are born & raised apart, intelligence scores are approx. 0.80 which is about the same # when the very same ppl. take the same intelligence test twice *also recall: behavioural genomics-how specific genes in their interactions with the enviro. Influence behaviour, focus in terms of intelligence is to identify genes that are related to increases/decreases in certain types of learning & problem solving ->studies show that collections of genes seem to pool together to influence general cognitive ability, each contribute small amount but as a whole, have large effect, no definitive conclusions though in terms of intelligence genes Gene knockout (KO) studies-involve removing specific gene thought to be involved in trait (intelligence in this case) & testing effects of removing gene by comparing animal behaviour without gene to those that have it ->in one study on mice, researchers discovered that removing one specific gene disrupted ability of mice to learn spatial layouts, from this, specific genes have shown relations to performance on tasks that have been adapted to study learning & cognitive abilities in animals ->opposite approach: scientists insert genetic material into mouse chromosomes to study changes associated with new gene, animal that receives a gene transplant is known as transgenic ->researchers have been able to engineer transgenic mice better than avg. learners, given gene that regulates chemical changes supporting memory formation->they outperform regular mice on many cognitive tasks Environmental Influences on Intelligence -controlled experiments with animals show that growing up in physically/socially stimulating environments results in faster learning & enhanced brain development/functioning as opposed to growing up in a dull environment -children raised in poverty show dramatic recovery in intelligence after getting into foster care homes -diet & lifestyle factors influence intelligence, children who are healthy attend school more frequently, spend more time on school work ->tempting to assume nutrition leads to better brain functioning but currently not fully understood, rather children who eat well are more prepared to learn -in terms of income, children of affluent households have higher IQ’s, high socioeconomic status means more access to schools/teachers (stimulating environment), low income families face stress->distracts children from school, impairs brain development -season of birth & birth order: those born during the first part of the year have higher verbal/mathematical aptitudes, older children get more out of school b/c they are slightly more mature & prepared to learn -for education, children accumulate factual knowledge/learn basic language/math skills & become more intelligent as a result ->for many parents, efforts to increase child’s intelligence begin soon as they realize baby is on the way, moment becomes intensified->leads to concern of products that can enhance infant intelligence -media claims to make babies smarter, but some claims: the more time spent on viewing educational tv, the lower their verbal comprehension & performance scores at 6 or 7 yrs. old, ->shows based on pantomime or simplified sing-alongs rather than narratives have been negatively correlated with vocab. development b/t 6 months to 2.5 yrs. Old ->not all effects are bad though, effects may be neutral or positive after around age 3 when children understand more complex tv shows, regardless parents should keep up to date with what children are watching Group similarities and Differences in Test Scores-many psychologists who study group differences believe that it’s important to do so b/c public policies/laws are often based on assumptions about group equalities/inequalities ->there appears to be greater variability among males in general intelligences, among the top 1% of scores on g tests, there’s more males but the same is true of the lowest 1% of test scores ->there is little to no difference in overall intelligence test scores for the majority of the population but coming across a math genius, the person is more likely male than female -some researchers have claimed that sex differences exist in specific cognitive abilities, for ex. females avg. better scores on verbal fluency tasks while males do better in visual-spatial manipulation ->might explain why men are more represented in fields of engineering/math…however psychologists shouldn’t over generalize concept of visual-spatial abilities ->since female score higher on verbal fluency, they can apply verbal strategies to solving visual- spatial problems, t/f females outperform males when visual-spatial tasks rely on verbal skills like where categories of items are located ->developmental studies can help clarify sex differences in cognition, guys & girls are born with roughly equal spatial abilities so any differences that emerge in childhood & beyond could be due to socialization & other experiences or genetically controlled maturation ->stereotypes have led to different treatment of boys & girls at a young age which persist throughout life, these differences bring different opportunities for developing specific skills & a sense of identity->educational institutions/public policy makers can combat this ->programs & changes to societal attitudes have helped increase presence of women in scientific fields->psychologists favouring environmental explanation of differences think education/socialization can eliminate differences in cognition whereas some think greater variability in males explain why there are less females & more females in the top percentiles -biopsychosocial perspective: sex hormones are involved in psychological processes, they are found all over the brain, specifically in regions associated with memory & thinking, individual differences in cognitive ability have been found to be related to hormone levels ->regardless of male or female, ppl. with lower testosterone do better on verbal fluency whereas higher testosterone, better mental rotation tasks -in terms of racial & socioeconomic similarities, in the US, Asian Americans score highest among intelligence measures followed by ppl. of European, Latin & then African heritage, there’s also strong correlation b/t measures of wealth/social status & IQ ->meritocracy-society in which ppl. that are most deserving/excellent gain most privilege & status, such a system would be geared towards allowing ppl. with most merit to rise to the top of society even if most are Asian or White ->however *recall that poverty, low income & opportunity leads to lower intelligence scores, studies of adopted children show strong enviro. influence ->in summary, the research in group differences is almost entirely correlational, not possible to conduct randomized experiments like assigning someone to social class ->*recall that correlations don’t provide evidence for cause & effect relationships, t/f it shouldn’t be assumed that genetic patterns contributing to specific race also account for differences in intelligence ->correlations support confirmation bias, if someone believes it’s true, then he/she is likely to interpret a correlation in a way that supports their belief ->ex. if one researcher believes men are genetically more intelligent than women while another believes tests are biased to favour men & if they discover men score higher on intelligence test, both researchers will claim they are right despite opposite beliefs ->ex. brain imaging shows women have more cerebral blood flow->on one hand, this fact could back up the belief that women are less intelligent & t/f women brains have to worker harder, on the other hand, perhaps women are more intelligent than men b/c of rich blood supply Beyond the Test: Personal Beliefs Affect IQ Scores -ideas about intelligence have some stability across cultures but there are differences too, for ex. Americans often distinguish b/t book smarts (ability to solve complex prob’s) & common sense (ability to make smart decisions in daily life) ->people everywhere can identify with book smart vs. street smart idea but according to this study, Western cultures focus mainly on intellectual intelligences, African/Asian cultures more likely to include concepts like respect & empathy ->seems if Americans are more comfortable labelling someone as brilliant & inconsiderate, such a person would be considered a strange genius, in other cultures, this person might be viewed as smart but in a limited way ->t/f Americans are more likely to distinguish book smarts from street smarts -another approach to analyzing non-scientific beliefs about intelligence->ask ppl. to rate their own intelligence & own family members->trends of this research show low to modest positive correlation (est. 0.1 to 0.3) in most studies ->yet, beliefs about intelligence have strong effect on personal performance & expectations ppl. have of others -beliefs about intelligence: there seems to be 2 influential beliefs about nature of intelligence ->entity theory-belief that intelligence is fixed characteristic & relatively difficult/impossible to change ->incremental theory-belief that intelligence can be shaped by experiences, practice & effort ->the differences b.t the theories aren’t as important as differences in resulting behaviour ->psychologist Carol Dweck-“why smart ppl are so stupid”, conducted following experiment: students had chance to answer 400+ questions concerning school topics (math, history, geo, literature…), students received immediate feedback on correct/incorrect answers ->those who held entity theories were more likely to give up/withdraw when dealt with challenging problems (that resulted in failure) ->believed successful ppl. were born smart…so why punish themselves if they don’t have ability to succeed? ->those who held incremental views of intelligences were more persistent, if motivated to succeed, students will work through failures/challenges->if intelligence ability can change, it makes sense to pursue goals -another experiment, tested group of middle school students to see if incremental views can be taught, randomized/controlled experiment, one group of 7 graders learned incremental- >grades increased over time in comparison to students with entity beliefs -in summary: these findings encourage a liberal approach to learning, anytime a belief about intelligence can be changed for the better -BUT *recall that there’s many types of intelligence: fluid, crystallized, analytical, practical….etc., t/f everyone differs in relative strengths/limits for each type, someone who is great at analyzing things might struggle with practical intelligence despite being told that he/she can change ->with knowledge about intelligence, ppl. can overcome negative effects stereotypes have on cognitive performance Stereotype threat-when ppl. are aware of stereotypes about their social group, may fear being reduced to that stereotype, can have short & long term effects ->ex. math classroom, female student might experience reminder of gender stereotypes (gossip perhaps…), effect would be distraction & test score that underestimates her true ability ->in long-term such experiences can become incorporated into one’s self-concept->process called disidentification->ex. African American students early in school have similar test scores to white students but over time become separated from White students by achievement gap, lower scores/grades may have resulted from stereotype threat & other social influences instead of reflecting lack of skill ->stereotype threat leads to physiological anxiety, in brain imaging experiments, women who experiences stereotypes before solving math problems showed less activity in frontal lobes that ppl. of control group & more in emotional circuitry, women solved fewer problems ->stereotype threat causes ppl. to focus more on how they’re performing than test itself->ppl. also try to ignore negative thoughts about their performance, both of these activities place high demand on working memory->leaves fewer cognitive resources available to solve problems Ch. 10.1 Methods, Concepts, and Prenatal Development Developmental psychology-study of change & stability of human physical, cognitive, social & behavioural characteristics across the life span->neuroscientists examine changes in nervous system that happen before birth & track them all the way to old age ->psychologists study how social behaviour originates in terms of parent-offspring bonds & flourishes/expands to include extended family, close friends, enemies, romantic relationships & broader social/cultural groups ->*important b/c humans don’t enter into world as adults; psychological qualities/abilities change drastically over time, early development influences behaviour throughout life Measuring Developmental Trends: Methods and Patterns-developmental psychologists rely on few designs for measuring how psychological traits/abilities change over time ->cross-sectional design-used to measure & compare samples of ppl. at diff. ages at specific time->ex. designing study examining premature birth effects on learning/thinking from infancy to adulthood->to recruit volunteers, one can compare ppl. of diff. age groups (like 1, 5, 20 yr. olds born prematurely) ->longitudinal design-(in contrast to cross-sectional) follows development of same set of individ’s. through time, following ex. above, study involved ID’ing set of 50 infants & measuring cognitive development annually over 20 year time period ->longitudinal study of group is costly & time-consuming, hindered by issue of attrition-happens when participants stop returning mail/phone calls, become ineligible, quit participating…etc... ->however some longitudinal studies have lasted very long, have been passed down from one generation of researchers to the next ->cross-sectional design is more convenient, more time/cost efficient to compare different ages at once, however there’s the issue of cohort effects-consequences of being born in specific year or narrow range of years ->differences across age cohorts result b/c of societal, nutritional, medical…etc... many other influences on physical/behavioural development, using the premature birth study example, some possible cohort effects (using cross-sectional design method) could include: differences in medical care for premature infants (infants have better care now than several years ago) ->1 yr. old cohort can develop differently than 20-yr. old due to medical differences, longitudinal designs t/f avoid cohort effects -info in developmental studies reveal trends & help ID what is “normal” for given age (such as normal age range for onset of language or age at which memory decline is expected) ->helps researchers decide if prob. needs to be addressed or if an individ. is exceptional in some ability for their age -developmental psychologists also face challenge of describing how changes take place ->quick changes in human growth are explained by a model that views development as progression of sudden transitions in physical/mental skills followed by slower, gradual change, this pattern of change is known as a series of stages ->much like growth spurt except transition is marked by rapid shifts in thinking & behaving instead of size/speed/amount; also rep.’s important shift in type of abilities ->adults though tend to change at slower pace->continuous change->adults complain about things not happening fast enough, cognitively learning new words, skills & facts but changes are gradual, there are still life stages though… -complex interactions b/t genetics & raising children in some enviro. determine developmental processes, if person is sensitive to stimulation, it helps facilitate behavioural/cognitive growth -during infancy/childhood, exposure to specific types of enviro. stimulation is important to healthy development, to become fluent in a language, infants needs to be exposed to speech during first years of life ->sensitive period-duration of time in which exposure to specific type of environmental stimulation is needed for normal development of specific ability, long term deficits can happen if language input for instance, is missed during sensitive period ->sensitive periods have been found in humans & other species for abilities like depth perception, balance, recognitions of parents & potential mates ->sensitive period for adopting & ID’ing culture could be uniquely human, immigrants younger than 20 seem are quicker to identifying more strongly with a new culture Prenatal to Newborns: From One Cell to Billions-a person’s development doesn’t begin at birth; genetics/enviro. shape an individ. throughout pregnancy (gestation) ->germinal stage-first phase of prenatal development & spans from conception to 2 weeks ->all begins at fertilization with formation of zygote-cell formed by fusion of sperm & ovum (egg cell), zygote begins dividing & as it develops, gestational age-estimated time since fertilization, is used to measure developmental progress ->at gestational age of 6 days, zygote is now called blastocyst-contains b/t 50-150 unspecialized cells, blastocyst uses energy/resources provided by ovum ->blastocyst moves along fallopian tubes & becomes implanted in lining of uterus ->soon after implantation, blastocyst divides into group of cells that continue developing into an embryo & another group that forms placenta (structure that allows oxygen & nutrients to pass to fetus & waste to leave fetus) ->embryonic stage-spans weeks 2 to 8, time which embryo begins to develop major physical structures like heart, nervous system, hands, feet & legs ->fetal stage-spans week 8 to birth, time which skeletal, organ & nervous systems become more developed/specialized, muscles develop & fetus begins to move, sleeping & waking cycles start, senses become adjusted->fetus can become responsive to external events -human brain development is a lengthy process->spans all the way to early adulthood, nd rd beginnings of brain can be seen during embryonic stage (b/t 2 & 3 weeks of gestation) ->cells genetically programmes to create nervous migrate to appropriate sites & differentiate into nerve cells, major divisions of brain (forebrain, midbrain & hindbrain) are noticeable at 4 weeks gestation ->by 11 weeks gestation, differentiation b/t cerebral hemispheres, cerebellum & brain stem are noticeable, during final months of pregnancy, *recall myelin…this fatty tissue builds up around developing nerve cells (myelination)-insulates nerve cells, enables efficient/quick transfer of messages->at birth, newborn has est. 100 billion neurons & brain approx.. 25% the size/weight of adult brain The Long-Term Effects of Premature Birth-b/c prenatal enviro. is ideal to prepare brain/body of life outside of womb, premature birth leaves newborns vulnerable ->usu. humans are born at gestational age of about 37 weeks (9 months), preterm infants-born at 36 weeks or earlier, depending on gestational age, they can be extremely underweight compared to full-term infants, important brain regions & body may be underdeveloped ->despite modern medical care, preterm infant born at 25 weeks has only little more than 50% chance of survival, fetal developments happens quick so survival rates reach 95% at about 30 weeks of gestation (still well short of full-term delivery) ->an underdeveloped nervous system can have short & long term negative effects on psychological/cognitive functioning ->researchers/doctors have compared different methods for improving survival & normal development in preterm infants, the Newborn Individualized Developmental Care & Assessment Program (NIDCAP) is a behaviourally based intervention which preterm infants are closely observed & given intensive care during early development ->one important component is keeping brain healthy/protected against potential harmful experiences, lights & stress can interfere by over stimulating underdeveloped brain ->NIDCAP calls for minimal lights, sound levels, stress & painful experiences to promote healthy brain development in preterm infants ->controlled studies suggest NIDCAP works, preterm infants born 29 weeks or less gestational age tested for neurological & behavioural maturity, within 9 months of birth, infants who received NIDCAP care showed significant improvements in motor skills, attention & other infant behavioural measures, compared to infants in standard care, NIDCAP infants showed improved neural brain development & more advanced pathways b/t major brain regions ->in long term follow up studies though, some but not all 8 yr. olds born preterm & given NIDCAP scored high on measures of thinking & problem-solving, as well as better frontal lobe functioning in comparison to 8 yr. olds that were born preterm but had no NIDCAP treatment ->thus, premature birth does not guarantee person will experience developmental problems although preterm ppl. do experiences higher rates of cognitive impairment as teens (but more than half have no cognitive prob.’s associated with premature birth) ->majority of children who survive preterm before 29 weeks gestation report typical sensory, emotional & physical development as teen ->*long term effects of premature birth are important b/c medical advances have increased likelihood of survival as well as NIDCAP which reduces long term negative effects, researchers have found that massage therapy on preterm infants 15 minutes/day can lead to 50% greater daily weight gain in comparison to preterm infants without massage ->kangaroo care-focuses on constant ongoing physical contact b/t infants & mothers as well as breastfeeding, has been shown to improve physical/psychological health of preterm infants -nutrition is important for normal fetal development, pregnant women usu. require almost 20% increase in energy intake during pregnancy (protein/calcium rich foods), malnutrition, illness & bad drugs lead to mild to severe physical & psychological effects on developing fetus Teratogen-substance, such as a drug, capable of producing physical defects, these defects usu. appear at birth or shortly after->b/c of this risk, expectant mothers who take certain medication, like those who take drugs to treat epilepsy, are advised to stop taking medication at some point during pregnancy, but it has to be balanced to ensure mother’s good health ->alcohol & tobacco can be teratogens if consumed at wrong times & large amounts during pregnancy, fetal alcohol syndrome-involves abnormalities in mental functioning/growth & facial development in offspring of women who use alcohol during pregnancy ->condition occurs in about 1 per 1000 births worldwide but prob. underreported, alcohol readily passes through placental membrane leaving fetus vulnerable to its effects, more alcohol=more likely birth defects appear ->smoking decreases blood oxygen & raises uterine concentrations of poisonous nicotine & carbon monoxide, increasing risk of miscarriage or death during infancy, babies born to mothers that smoke are twice as likely to have low birth weight & have 30% chance of premature birth ->babies exposed to smoke are as much as 3 times more likely to die from infant death syndrome->unexpected/explainable death of child younger than 1, same risks apply to expecting mothers that have regular exposure to second-hand smoke->children born to mothers that smoke are also at greater risk of having problems with some aspects of emotional development & impulse control ->health of newborns can also succumb to exposure of bacteria/viruses, within 1 year after birth, infants are given vaccinations to protect against conditions like measles, mumps & rubella (MMR) Vaccinations and Autism->in late 1990’s, researches claimed vaccination for measles, mumps & MMR combined was linked to autism development->this vaccination is given to many children around 1st birthday & 2 dosage at approx. time they start school ->hypothesis that MMR vaccine causes autism took off when other scientists couldn’t replicate findings; however it was later discovered Andrew Wakefield (doctor who published original study) had financial interests linking diseased with vaccine, t/f fraud so no scientific evidence MMR vaccine causes autism -in comparison to offspring of other species, healthy newborn humans are almost completely helpless, require extended care -*recall that tone of infants’ crying has an accent resembling melodies of native language, t/f sensory experiences & learning happen before birth, by month 4 of prenatal development, brain starts to receive signals from eyes & ears ->by month 7-8 of gestation, infants can hear & seem to actively listen ->in one study, mothers read “Cat in the Hat” twice daily during final 6 weeks of pregnancy->at birth, babies given pacifier used to control tape recording of mother reading story & other stories not read before birth->babies sucked pacifier way more to hear mothers read “Cat in the Hat”, sucked it less for stories not read before ->psychologists have determined infants can see objects up to 12-15 inches away at birth, reach normal visual capacity b/t 6-12 months of age ->color differentiation occurs at least 2 months after birth, after 8 months, infants can usu. perceive basic shapes/objects as well as adults do ->just like adults, odours are strong memory cues for infants, ex. infants can learn toy will work in presence of an odour but not others, this memory is retained over several days, can even differentiate odour of mother’s breast milk from stranger’s, infants turn towards breast milk scent, which initiates nursing ->sensory abilities are in various stages of development when infants are born, development is well underway before birth even occurs ->by 5 months gestation, fetus begins to have control of voluntary motor movements, last months of gestation & first months of life->muscles & nervous system become developed enough to show basic reflexes-involuntary muscular reactions to specific types of stimulation ->reflexes provide newborns/infants with basic set of responses for feeding & interacting with caregivers, few days after birth, newborns can show complex responses to social clues like copying facial expressions of caregivers Ch. 10.2 Infancy and Childhood -parents are skeptical when their children watch Disney’s “Baby Einstein” books, toys & DVD’s, do they provide advertised long-term benefits of increasing cognitive skills?->American Academy of Pediatrics recommends children younger than 2 avoid watching TV b/c research shows memory & language skills develop slower in infants who watch TV regularly ->controlled studies show that DVD’s have no effect on vocab. development, it’s better for parents to spend time reading to infants Physical Changes in Infancy and Childhood -infant abilities to move follows in stages->from crawling to standing to walking over first 12-18 months of life, age at while children perform these movements differs from one child to the next ->development of motor skills rely more on practice/conscious effort in contrast to reflexes ->cross-cultural studies show children raised in different enviro.’s mature at slightly different rates, variations may be result of expectations paren
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