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Module 13 - Developmental Issues, Prenatal Development, and the Newborn

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PSYC 1010
Heather Jenkins

M ODULE 13 - DEVELOPMENTAL ISSUES, PRENATAL DEVELOPMENT ,AND THE N EWBORN Developmental Psychology - study of the changes in biological, physical, psychological & behavioral processes (studies physical, cognitive, and social development across lifespan) Focuses on 3 Major Issues 1) Nature & nurture (Is it the environment or heredity?) -Critical & sensitive periods -Critical period = age where experiences must occur -Sensitive periods = optimal age range 2)Continuity versus discontinuity - Gradual or stages? 3) Stability versus change - do things remain constant? -no change - remains constant = straight horizontal line -continuous - gradual changes = curved line - stages - discontinuous stages = staircase line - inverted U Shape line - emerges early, peaks, diminished with age - U Shape line - emerges early, disappears, re-emerges Continuity vs. Stages  Researchers who see development as a function of experience tend to see development as continuous and gradual. Nurture is continuous  Researchers who focus on biological maturation see spurts of growth and other changes that make one stage of development very different from another. Nature has stages Three different types of development: cognitive, moral, and psychosocial - have been running in parallel. - are they really separate stages, or a continuous process of development? Stability vs. Change  As people grow older, personality gradually stabilizes  We cannot predict all of our eventual traits based on our early years  Stability provides our identity  Our trust in our ability to change gives us hope for a brighter future Prenatal Development: 3 stages Germinal  first 2 weeks  zygote attaches to uterine wall  milestone of the zygote stage: cells begin to differentiate into specialized locations and structures Embryonic  2nd-8th week  placenta and umbilical cord develop  milestone of the implantation stage: differentiated cells develop into organs and bones Fetal  begins at 9th week to birth  milestone of the fetal stage: by 6 months, the fetus might be able to survive outside the womb Genetics and sex determination  23rd chromosome - X OR Y  Females =XX  Males =XY  Y chromosome contains TDF which initiates the development of testes - testes secrete androgens Critical Period = 6-8 weeks -there is insufficient androgen activ
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