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Chapter 10 Human Development


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Title: Chapter 10 Human Development

Chapter 10 Human Development
Human Development
  • Developmental Psychology
  • The goal of developmental psychology is to
    understand all the factors that influence human
    development from conception to death.
  • Developmental psychologists have made much
    progress by devising increasingly careful and
    sensitive ways to measure behavioral abilities.

Module 10.1
  • The Study of Early Development

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • The growth and changes that occur before birth
    are referred to as prenatal development. There
    are identifiable stages of this period of life.

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • Zygote Fertilized egg cell
  • Blastula
  • Gastrula
  • Embryo 2 to 8 weeks after conception
  • Fetus 8 weeks after conception until birth

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • Prenatal brain development
  • By seven weeks the hindbrain and midbrain are
    developed enough to produce movements.
  • By 36 weeks those brain structures produce head
    and eye movements in response to sounds, a
    sleep-wake cycle, and REM sleep.
  • The cerebral cortex is relatively inactive during
    this period.

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • The maternal-fetal connection
  • Everything that mother consumes reaches the baby
    through the placenta.
  • If mothers nutrition and prenatal care are poor
    or deficient, baby will also be deprived.
  • If mother drinks, uses drugs, or smokes, baby
    will receive these substances, often with serious

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • Low-birth weight and premature infants
  • Small and premature babies have a higher risk of
    dying in infancy.
  • They are more likely to have impaired brain
  • Those who survive infancy are at higher risk of
    behavioral and academic problems during
  • Low birth weight may or may not be the cause of
    these impairments, but it definitely correlates
    with whatever factors do cause them, if it is not
    in fact the direct cause.

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • Fetal alcohol syndrome
  • If mother drinks alcohol during pregnancy, the
    baby is likely to be born with fetal alcohol
    syndrome (FAS).
  • FAS is characterized by stunted growth of the
    head and body, facial, cranial and ear
    malformations, neurological damage, learning
    disabilities and mental retardation.

  • Figure 10.3
  • The more alcohol a woman drinks during pregnancy,
    the more likely her baby is to have anomalies of
    the head, face, and organs. (Based on data of
    Ernhart et al., 1987)

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • A milder version, called fetal alcohol effects
    (FAE), has also been noted.
  • A child with FAE appears normal but has impaired
    academic skills and mild behavioral problems.
  • The more alcohol mother drinks, and the longer
    she continues drinking, the greater the risk to
    the developing baby.
  • There is no safe level of alcohol consumption
    during pregnancy.

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • During prenatal development, growing neurons need
    persistent excitation to survive.
  • Alcohol facilitates GABA, the main inhibitory
    neurotransmitter of the brain.
  • This leads the neurons to self-destruct.
  • Any chemicals that increase activity at
    inhibitory synapses, such as tranquilizers,
    anesthetics, and anti-depressants, should be

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • Maternal smoking
  • Mothers smoking also increases the probability
    that her baby will have health problems.
  • Smoking (before and after birth) has been
    associated with an increased risk of SIDS.
  • Conduct disorder has been found to correlate with
    mothers smoking during pregnancy more strongly
    than with fathers antisocial behavior, SES, lack
    of supervision, or use of harsh punishment by the

The Fetus and the Newborn
  • Prenatal Development
  • To maximize the chance of having a healthy baby
    with an undamaged brain, a pregnant woman should
    avoid using alcohol and tobacco, follow a
    nutritious diet, receive regular prenatal care,
    and consult with her health care provider before
    using any prescription or over-the counter

  • Why should a pregnant woman who is being treated
    for depression with medication stop taking her
    anti-depressant drugs?

They are likely to cause damage to the developing
fetus brain by increasing activity at inhibitory
Behavioral Capacities of the Newborn
  • Newborns have little muscle control, and exhibit
    the greatest purposeful movement with their eyes
    and mouths.
  • Development proceeds from the head down and from
    the midline out, and so gradually babies can move
    their trunks, limbs and fingers.

Behavioral Capacities of the Newborn
  • Newborns Vision
  • Newborns have far from perfect vision, but see
    far better than was believed just a few
    generations ago
  • 2-day-infants prefer to look at drawings of human
  • Infants direct their gaze at the same things that
    attract adult attention.
  • As infants gain voluntary control of their arms
    and legs, and begin to crawl, a fear of heights
    develops that is almost certainly related to
    improved depth perception.

  • Figure 10.4
  • Infants pay more attention to faces than to other
    patterns. These results suggest that infants are
    born with certain visual preferences. (Based on
    Fantz, 1963)

Behavioral Capacities of the Newborn
  • Newborns Vision
  • Visual motor coordination develops quickly but
    must be practiced to continue being improved.
  • Experiments with kittens suggest that eye
    movements must be allowed to coordinate with body
    movements for further development of all visually
    guided behavior.

Behavioral Capacities of the Newborn
  • Newborns Hearing
  • In general, infants suck more vigorously when
    they hear sounds that they find stimulating.
  • Some sounds (such as the human voice) are more
    stimulating than others.
  • Most sounds eventually produce a decreased
    response as the infant becomes habituated to them
  • Playing new sounds for an infant will increase
    responding, and may even result in a
    dishabituation, or increased responding to
    previously habituated sounds.

  • Figure 10.6
  • After 5 minutes of hearing a ba sound, the
    infants sucking habituates. When a new sound,
    pa, follows, the sucking rate increases, an
    indication that infants do hear a difference
    between the two sounds. (Based on results of
    Eimas, Siqueland, Juscyk, Vigorito, 1971)

Behavioral Capacities of the Newborn
  • Newborns Learning and Memory
  • Infants as young as one month old can
    discriminate between phonemes.
  • Infants show a marked preference for their
    mothers voice over another womans voice.
  • They showed this preference on the day of their
    birth, suggesting that they have some memory of
    her voice from before birth.

Behavioral Capacities of the Newborn
  • Newborns Learning and Memory
  • Older infants (2-3 months old) show ability to
    learn responses and remember them for days
    afterwards, such as kicking their legs to make a
    mobile move.
  • Nine month olds can learn to press a lever to
    move a toy train around a track, and can retain
    this memory for a fairly long time.

Behavioral Capacities of the Newborn
  • Newborns Learning and Memory
  • Object Permanence
  • Jean Piaget believed that infants lacked a
    concept of object permanence during the early
    months of life.
  • Object permanence is the idea that objects
    continue to exist even when one cannot see them
    or otherwise sense them.
  • According to Piaget, an infant does not know that
    a hidden object is still there until about 8-9
    months of age.

Behavioral Capacities of the Newborn
  • Newborns Learning and Memory
  • It is not clear if Piagets inference is
    accurate. Infants who are tested differently show
    signs of having a notion of object permanence
    earlier than Piaget believed was possible.
  • Infants seem to have a grasp of physical laws and
    can distinguish possible from impossible events
    (at least their reactions seem to indicate that
    they do.)
  • They may also have a grasp of simple numerical

(No Transcript)
  • Figure 10.9
  • Mean looking times of 6- and 8-month-old infants
    after they had watched either possible or
    impossible events. (From Baillargeon, 1986)

Newborns and Young Infants
  • There has been a steady advance in our ability to
    test the development and skills of very young
    human beings.
  • It is clear that much more is going on in their
    brains than they can show us, and than we once

Module 10.2
  • The Development of Thinking and Reasoning

Jean Piagets Views of Development
  • Piaget believed that the effect of any experience
    on a persons knowledge or thinking depended on
    the persons maturity combined with previous
  • He began his psychological career administering
    IQ tests, but found that he was bored with this
    activity. He was however fascinated by the
    incorrect answers that children would give.

Jean Piagets Views of Development
  • Piaget came to believe that children think
    differently from adults, both quantitatively and
  • He believed that children of different cognitive
    maturity levels react to the same experience very
  • Piaget used his own extensive observational
    studies of children to support his conclusions.

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • Piaget believed that a child constructs new
    mental processes as he or she interacts with the
  • Behavior is based on schemata (singular -
  • A schema is an organized way of interacting with
    objects in the world.
  • New schemata are added, and old schemata are
    changed as the child matures.

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • Adaptation of old schemata takes place through
    two processes.
  • Through assimilation, a person applies an old
    schema to a new object.
  • Through accommodation, a person modifies an old
    schema to fit a new object.
  • People in all stages switch back and forth
    between these two strategies, but ultimately
    cognitive change is accomplished through

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • The Four Stages of Intellectual Development
  • Sensorimotor Birth to 1 years of age
  • Preoperational 1 to 7 years of age
  • Concrete Operations 7 to 11 years of age
  • Formal Operations 11 years of age and older

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • The Sensorimotor Stage
  • Piaget called the first stage the sensorimotor
    stage because at this early age behavior consists
    primarily of simple motor responses to sensory
  • Examples of these would be the grasping and
    sucking reflexes.
  • Piaget believed that infants respond only to what
    they see and hear, not what they remember or

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • The Sensorimotor Stage
  • As infants progress through the sensorimotor
    stage, they seem to develop a concept of self.
  • At about 1 years of age, they begin to show signs
    that they recognize themselves.
  • They also begin to show self-conscious emotions
    such as embarrassment.

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • The Preoperational Stage
  • Piaget called the second stage of cognitive
    development the preoperational stage because the
    child lacks operations.
  • The term operations refers to reversible mental
  • The lack of operations leads to errors in
    cognition such as egocentric thinking the child
    for example knows that he has a brother, but
    doesnt understand that he is his brothers

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • The Preoperational Stage
  • Another example of a concept that preoperational
    children lack is conservation.
  • The inability to conserve results in a failure to
    recognize that changes in shape and arrangement
    do not always signify changes in amount or number.

  • Table 10.1
  • Typical Tasks Used to Measure Conservation

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • The Concrete Operations Stage
  • From about age 7 children begin to exhibit
    reversible operations and seem to understand the
    conservation of physical properties.
  • According to Piaget, during the stage of concrete
    operations children can perform mental operations
    on concrete objects.
  • They may however have trouble with abstract or
    hypothetical ideas.

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • The Formal Operations Stage
  • Formal Operations is Piagets term for the mental
    processes used to deal with abstract,
    hypothetical situations.
  • These are processes that demand logical,
    deductive reasoning and systematic planning.
  • Piaget proposed that children reach this stage
    just before adolescence (at about age 11.)
  • Researchers have found that some people take
    longer to reach formal operations, and some
    people never do.

  • Table 10.2
  • Summary of Piagets Stages of Cognitive

Concept Check
  • According to Piaget, in what stage would a child
    be if she could remember where a hidden object
    is, but doesnt realize that she is her sisters

  • In which stage is a child who has grasping and
    sucking reflexes but cannot remember where an
    object is that has been covered for 15 seconds?

  • In which stage is a child who can think about
    concepts such as infinity and time, and has no
    difficulty with conservation and reversible

Formal operations
Concept Check
  • In which stage is a child who can conserve mass
    and volume and remember the location of hidden
    objects, but doesnt understand the concept of

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • Are Piagets Stages Distinct?
  • Piaget believed that the four stages of
    intellectual development were discrete, and that
    each one represented a major reorganization in
    cognitive processes.
  • More recently though researchers have shown that
    this conclusion is not entirely warranted.

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • Are Piagets Stages Distinct?
  • Preoperational children can answer different
    versions of the conservation tasks correctly.
  • In general, the progression between the stages
    appears to be gradual, so that the difference
    between stages may not be one of either having
    the ability or not it may actually be that the
    younger child has the same ability but only uses
    it for simple tasks.

  • Figure 10.15
  • (a) With the standard conservation-of-number
    task, preoperational children answer that the
    lower row has more items. (b) With a simplified
    task, the same children say that both rows have
    the same number of items.

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • Implications for Education Piaget
  • Children must discover certain concepts on their
  • Childrens attention must be directed to key
    aspects of concepts when they are ready to learn
    those concepts.
  • The teacher needs to determine the childs level
    of functioning and then teach material
    appropriate to that level.

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • Implications for Education Vygotsky
  • Lev Vygotsky was a Russian developmental
    psychologist who thought that education needed to
    meet children at their own level.
  • He believed that the use of the symbolic system
    of language allowed humans to influence others
    and control our own behavior.
  • Education needs to utilize this feature of
    language and take into account the childs level
    of cognitive maturity.
  • He proposed the existence of a zone of proximal
    development, which is the distance between what a
    child can do alone and what a child can do with
    assistance from others.

An Overview of Piagets Theory
  • Implications for Education Vygotsky
  • Vygotsky proposed the existence of a zone of
    proximal development, which is the distance
    between what a child can do alone and what a
    child can do with assistance from others.
  • Instruction should occur within the zone, but
    appropriate guidance should be given whenever
    possible to bring the child to understanding of
    more sophisticated concepts.
  • He compared this process to scaffolding,
    temporary supports used to construct a new
    building. These are temporary supports for the
    childs cognitive processes.

  • Who would be more optimistic about the
    possibility of teaching a 5 year old to
    understand conservation of mass?

According to Vygotsky, conservation might lie
within the childs zone of proximal development
Difficulties of Inferring Childrens Concepts
  • There may be a fundamental weakness in the
    assumption made by Piaget that a child either
    has or lacks a concept.
  • Concepts develop gradually and may appear using
    some methods of testing but not others.

Difficulties of Inferring Childrens Concepts
  • Distinguishing Appearance from Reality
  • Do children in the early preoperational stage
    fail to distinguish appearance from reality?
  • Its not entirely clear whether a childs
    inability to do so has more to do with lacking a
    concept or inadequate language skills.
  • Children for example may seem to confuse a rock
    and a sponge that looks like a rock, but when
    asked to bring to an adult something to wipe up
    spilled water, they have no problem identifying
    the sponge as the correct object for that

  • Figure 10.16
  • If an experimenter hides a small toy in a small
    room and asks a child to find a larger toy in
    the same place in the larger room, a
    21/2-year-old searches haphazardly. (a) However,
    the same child knows exactly where to look, if
    the experimenter says this is the same room as
    before, except that a machine has expanded it (b).

  • Figure 10.17
  • A child sits in front of a screen covering four
    cups and watches as one adult hides a surprise
    under one of the cups.

  • Figure 10.17 (cont.)
  • A child sits in front of a screen covering four
    cups and watches as one adult hides a surprise
    under one of the cups.

  • Figure 10.17 (cont.)
  • Then that adult and another (who had not been
    present initially) point to one of the cups to
    signal where the surprise is hidden. Many
    4-year-olds consistently follow the advice of the
    informed adult 3-year-olds do not.

Difficulties of Inferring Childrens Concepts
  • Understanding Other Peoples Thoughts
  • Are young children more cognitively egocentric
    than adults are?
  • What Piaget meant by this is that a child cannot
    easily understand the perspectives of other
  • Various experiments show that preschool aged
    children make errors of thought that are typical
    of egocentric thinking.
  • However, adults can make the same mistakes
    according to other studies.

  • Which is the clearest example of egocentric
  • 1. An exceptionally wealthy man gives no money to
  • 2. A woman assumes that all her friends will want
    to see the same movie that she does.
  • 3. At student council meeting, a student takes
    credit for someone elses ideas.

2 selfishness (1) and dishonesty (3) are not
the same as egocentrism.
The Development of Moral Reasoning
  • Childrens general powers of reasoning change
    across childhood, and so does their reasoning
    about issues of right and wrong.
  • There are a number of different psychological
    frameworks to describe the changes in moral
    reasoning that occur over the lifespan.

The Development of Moral Reasoning
  • Kohlbergs Method of Evaluating Levels of Moral
  • Lawrence Kohlberg argued that moral reasoning
    progresses through distinct stages.
  • Young children tend to equate wrongness with
  • Young children also frequently fail to consider
    intent in judging a deed.
  • He proposed that people pass through a distinct
    sequence of moral reasoning stages.

The Development of Moral Reasoning
  • Kohlbergs Method of Evaluating Levels of Moral
  • Kohlberg believed that people start at a low
    level of moral reasoning and progress through
    higher stages.
  • He believed that these stages were roughly
    analogous to Piagets stages, but the progress
    was slower.
  • He measured the maturity of an individuals moral
    reasoning by evaluating the responses given to
    moral dilemmas problems that pit one moral
    value against another.

The Development of Moral Reasoning
  • Kohlbergs Method of Evaluating Levels of Moral
  • Preconventional Morality 1. Punishment
  • 2. Instrumental Relativism
  • Conventional Morality 3. Interpersonal
    Concordance 4. Law
    Order Orientation
  • Postconventional Morality 5. Social
    Contract Orientation
  • 6. Universal Ethical

The Development of Moral Reasoning
  • Kohlbergs Method of Evaluating Levels of Moral
  • Kohlberg assessed the level of moral reasoning
    using the explanation for the decision offered,
    rather than the decision itself.
  • Few people are absolutely consistent in their
    moral reasoning.
  • Kohlberg believed that very few people actually
    reached the highest stages.

  • TABLE 10.3 
  • Responses to One of Kohlbergs Moral Dilemmas by
    People at Six Levels of Moral Reasoning
  • The dilemma Heinzs wife was near death from
    cancer. A druggist had recently discovered a drug
    that might be able to save her. The druggist was
    charging 2000 for the drug, which cost him 200
    to make. Heinz could not afford to pay for it,
    and he could borrow only 1000 from friends. He
    offered to pay the rest later. The druggist
    refused to sell the drug for less than the full
    price paid in advance I discovered the drug,
    and Im going to make money from it. Late that
    night, Heinz broke into the store to steal the
    drug for his wife. Did Heinz do the right thing

  • TABLE 10.3 (cont.) 
  • Responses to One of Kohlbergs Moral Dilemmas by
    People at Six Levels of Moral Reasoning
  • The dilemma Heinzs wife was near death from
    cancer. A druggist had recently discovered a drug
    that might be able to save her. The druggist was
    charging 2000 for the drug, which cost him 200
    to make. Heinz could not afford to pay for it,
    and he could borrow only 1000 from friends. He
    offered to pay the rest later. The druggist
    refused to sell the drug for less than the full
    price paid in advance I discovered the drug,
    and Im going to make money from it. Late that
    night, Heinz broke into the store to steal the
    drug for his wife. Did Heinz do the right thing

  • Figure 10.19
  • Learning to distinguish right from wrong is the
    development of moral reasoning. Most younger
    adolescents give answers corresponding to
    Kohlbergs earlier moral stages. By age 16 most
    are at Kohlbergs fourth and fifth stages. (Based
    on Kohlberg, 1969)

The Development of Moral Reasoning
  • Limitations of Kohlbergs Views
  • Justice versus Caring Orientations
  • Kohlberg based his system of reasoning on
    peoples rights.
  • Carol Gilligan proposed that some people might
    reason based on what would help or hurt others,
    an orientation of caring.
  • Gilligan proposed that women focus more on caring
    and men more on rights.
  • Later research has shown the gender differences
    in orientation to be small.

The Development of Moral Reasoning
  • Limitations of Kohlbergs Views
  • Gilligans Stages of Moral Development
  • Stage Basis
  • Preconventional What is helpful or harmful to
  • Conventional What is helpful or harmful to
  • Postconventional What is helpful or
    harmful to myself and others?

  • Table 10.4
  • Carol Gilligans Stages of Moral Development

The Development of Moral Reasoning
  • Limitations of Kohlbergs Views
  • How Does Moral Reasoning Relate to Actual
  • Knowing what is right and doing it are not the
    same things.
  • Kohlberg has been criticized for overestimating
    peoples moral behavior.
  • Kohlberg has been criticized for underestimating
    peoples moral behavior.

The Development of Moral Reasoning
  • Limitations of Kohlbergs Views
  • People may describe how they would engage in
    higher-level moral behavior, but actually behave
    in the manner that is characteristic of a lower
    level, where there is a more tangible benefit for
  • Children may say that the reason not to do
    something is because theyd get caught, but when
    ask if theyd do it if there was no chance of
    getting caught, say they wouldnt anyway.
  • Kohlbergs theory does not generalize well across

Developing Cognitive Abilities
  • Developing an understanding of the world is an
    enormous challenge for children.
  • We should acknowledge that for us adults
    understanding the world, and how children learn
    to understand it, are daunting tasks as well.

Module 10.3
  • Social and Emotional Development

Research Designs for Studying Development
  • There are two types of research design used in
    studying human development
  • A cross-sectional study compares groups of
    individuals of different ages simultaneously.
  • A longitudinal study follows a single group of
    individuals as they develop.

  • Table 10.5
  • Cross-Sectional and Longitudinal Studies

Research Designs for Studying Development
  • Sources of bias in developmental research
  • Selective attrition, or differential survival, is
    the increased probability of some kinds of
    subjects dropping out.
  • Cohort effects, or bias created because groups of
    contemporaries all have the same experience,
    knowledge or behaviors.

Concept Check
  • Follow-up of a 10-year-long study of a group of
    adults with infant children who agreed to take
    parenting classes and job training in exchange
    for public assistance until gaining employment
    shows high overall levels of satisfaction.
  • What type of study is this?
  • What source of bias would be of great concern in
    this study?

Longitudinal study
Selective attrition
Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • Erikson divided the human life span into eight
    ages, each with its own social and emotional
  • In this way he sought to provide a model of why
    people behave the way they do, given the
    decisions that they are facing according to age.

Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • When the conflict is resolved in a positive and
    constructive manner, the person moves into the
    next stage in a psychologically healthy state.
  • If the conflict is not resolved, the negative
    effects will most likely carry over into future
    stages, and have a detrimental effect on the
    challenges that are yet to be faced.

Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • Ages 0 - 1
  • The infant faces the issue
  • Is my social world predictable and supportive?
  • The main conflict of infancy is basic trust
    versus basic mistrust.

Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • Ages 1 3
  • The toddler asks the question
  • Can I do things for myself or must I always rely
    on others to help me?
  • The main conflict of toddlerhood is autonomy
    versus shame and doubt.

Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • Ages 3 6
  • The preschooler needs to figure out
  • Am I a good person or a bad person?
  • The main conflict of the preschool aged child is
    initiative versus guilt.

Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • Ages 6 12
  • In an expanding social world, the school-aged
    child wants to know
  • Am I successful or am I worthless?
  • The preadolescent faces the struggle with a sense
    of industry versus inferiority.

Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • Adolescence
  • Teenagers begin to seek independence and seek the
    answer to this fundamental question
  • Who am I?
  • The adolescent needs to resolve the conflict
    between a settled identity versus role confusion.

Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • Young Adulthood
  • Young adults come to terms with the importance of
    companionship and connection
  • Shall I share my life with another person or
    live alone?
  • The central conflict of early adulthood is that
    of intimacy versus isolation.

Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • Middle Age
  • In the middle of adulthood one wants to feel that
    they have contributed to society in some
    meaningful way
  • Will I add anything of real value to the world
    as a worker and a parent?
  • The conflict of middle adulthood is the desire to
    achieve generativity versus stagnation.

Eriksons Ages of Human Development
  • Old Age
  • The reality that time is growing short forces
    people to face a final and profound question
  • Have I lived a full and meaningful life, or have
    I squandered my time?
  • As older adults we struggle to determine whether
    we have arrived at a stage of ego integrity
    versus despair.

  • Table 10.6
  • Eriksons Ages of Human Development

Infancy and Childhood
  • Attachment Theory
  • Attachment is a long-term feeling of closeness
    between a child and a caregiver
  • Before the mid-twentieth century, developmental
    psychologists believed that feeding was the
    primary cause of attachment between mother and
  • Harlows studies with newborn rhesus monkeys
    suggest that warmth and touch was even more
    important that feeding.
  • He called this essential close physical
    interaction contact comfort.

  • Figure 10.25
  • All the baby monkeys preferred the cloth mothers,
    regardless of which artificial mother fed them.
    The two bottom lines show hours per day spent
    with the wire mothers.

Infancy and Childhood
  • Attachment Theory
  • Contact comfort is necessary but not sufficient.
  • The baby monkeys who were raised by cuddly
    artificial cloth mothers had plenty of contact
    comfort, but were still unable to raise their own
    young upon reaching reproductive age.
  • However, baby monkeys raised by cloth mothers and
    also interacting on a regular basis with other
    young monkeys developed normally.
  • Social interaction with other individuals is also
    necessary though these individuals do not have
    to be a parent.

Infancy and Childhood
  • Early Attachment in Humans
  • Some researchers wanted to know why the quality
    of attachment between human children and their
    parents seemed to vary so much in quality.
  • Mary Ainsworth devised a test called the Strange
    Situation to examine what factors might
    contribute to this variation.

Infancy and Childhood
  • Early Attachment in Humans
  • In the Strange Situation study, the following
    sequence of events was observed through a one-way
  • A mother and infant (12 to 18 months of age)
    enter a room with toys in it.
  • A stranger enters the room.
  • Mother leaves the room.
  • Mother returns to the room.
  • Mother and the stranger leave the room.
  • The stranger returns to the room.
  • Mother returns to the room again.

Infancy and Childhood
  • Early Attachment in Humans
  • The psychologists who observed the Strange
    Situation classified the infants responses as
  • Securely attached
  • Anxious or insecurely attached
  • Anxious and avoidant
  • Disorganized

Infancy and Childhood
  • Early Attachment in Humans
  • Uses of the Strange Situation
  • Has been used with fathers as well as mothers and
  • As a predictor of the quality of the childs
    future relationship with parents
  • Has also been used with grandparents and
    grandchildren, and even pets and their humans

Infancy and Childhood
  • Early Attachment in Humans
  • Factors to consider when interpreting the results
    of the Strange Situation study
  • Parental behavior does have an effect on
  • The effect upon parenting of the childs innate
    temperament also needs to be considered.
  • A child who is born with a pleasant and calm
    temperament may elicit more affectionate
    behaviors from a parent than a less predictable
    and fussier infant.
  • The study may have limited applicability across

Infancy and Childhood
  • Social Development in Childhood
  • The quality of a childs friendships appears to
    be of crucial importance during middle childhood
  • Some children are popular and have little trouble
    making friends and gaining admirers.
  • Some children are rejected, outcast and avoided
    by most other children.
  • Controversial children are accepted by some peers
    and rejected by others.
  • In most cases, these statuses remain consistent
    from year to year.

  • Over the course of the twentieth century,
    adolescence in our society has lengthened.
  • It is generally recognized to begin at puberty,
    the onset of changes that result in sexual
  • The end of adolescence is harder to discern.
  • It was customary through most of the last century
    to characterize adolescence as a period of storm
    and stress.

  • The turbulence of adolescence is seen in
    moodiness, conflict with parents, and tendency to
    risky behavior.
  • These trends may reflect hormonal fluctuations
    and brain maturation, but may also be culturally
  • There are many cultures in which there is no
    adolescence, teenagers are married and working.

  • The secular trend of earlier puberty, and a
    societal movement toward a lengthened education
    and postponement of marriage have influenced the
    American experience of adolescence.
  • There is a tendency in this society to stereotype
  • Most adolescents are stable, relatively happy and
    complete this period to become well-adjusted

  • Identity Development
  • Adolescence is the time of finding oneself.
  • Western society offers many choices to teenagers.
  • This is invigorating and yet also can cause
  • An adolescents concern about the future and
    achieving self-understanding has been referred to
    as the identity crisis.
  • The crisis may or may not be so turbulent,
    depending on the adolescent.

  • Identity Development
  • James Marcia developed a set of identity statuses
    based on two major elements of identity
  • Whether or not one is actively exploring the
    issues of identity development crisis
  • Whether or not one has made any decisions

  • Identity Development
  • Those who have not given decisions any real
    thought and have no clear sense of identity are
    in identity diffusion.
  • Those who have made firm decisions without giving
    them much thought are said to be in foreclosure.
  • Those who are seriously considering issues but
    have not made any decisions are in a state of
  • Those who have explored the possibilities and
    made their own decisions are called identity

  • Identity Development
  • Marcias statuses are useful for thinking about
    the important dimensions of finding a stable
  • It is possible that identity achievement does not
    happen all at once.
  • One may settle on a career well before finding a
    committed relationship.
  • It is also possible or even common to rethink
    decisions later in life.

  • The Personal Fable
  • According to David Elkind, teenagers are
    particularly prone to harbor beliefs such as
  • I am special what is true for others is not
    true for me.
  • It wont happen to me!
  • Nobody understands how I feel.
  • Everyone cares about how I look and what I am
    wearing. also known as the imaginary
  • These beliefs may be adaptive in some situations,
    but can also lead to risk-taking behavior and
    feelings of alienation from parents and peers.

  • The beginning of young adulthood is marked by
    commitments in the areas of career, relationships
    and lifestyle.
  • The quality of the period known as middle age is
    influenced in part by the outcome of these early
    adult decisions.

  • Job Satisfaction
  • In general job satisfaction is strongly related
    to overall life satisfaction
  • Most adults say they are satisfied with their
    work, but also say that they would choose a
    different job if they could start over.
  • Younger workers generally report being less
    satisfied than older workers.
  • Few people change jobs once they have reached
    middle age.

  • Figure 10.29
  • Psychologists propose several reasons why most
    older workers report higher job satisfaction than
    younger workers do.

  • The Midlife Transition
  • The midlife crisis is a dramatic expression for
    the reassessment of personal goals that many
    people experience.
  • A more low-key and accurate term is midlife
  • Some abandon unrealistic goals set in youth and
    set new goals that fit with their current lives.
  • Others try to fulfill some of those early life
    dreams, or set new ones.

  • Old Age
  • Despite the stereotypes we hold, old age is not a
    uniform experience for humans
  • Some people do deteriorate rapidly, either
    physically or intellectually.
  • Others remain active and alert into their 80s and
    well beyond.
  • In general, the elderly in our society have been
    experiencing improved health, activity and

  • Old Age
  • A commonly voiced concern is how to maintain a
    sense of dignity and self-esteem
  • The course of youth and middle age influences
    this sense.
  • The amount of regret about how that time was used
    also has an effect.
  • Cultural attitudes towards aging are also
  • The more a culture values its elders, the easier
    it will be to maintain a sense of dignity.

  • Old Age
  • Elderly people generally differ from younger
    people in some of their social habits.
  • They will more frequently seek the company of
    familiar people.
  • The elderly will often try to retain some control
    over their lives, even when faced with failing

  • The Psychology of Facing Death
  • Death can occur at any age, but we usually
    associate it with the later years of life.
  • The way we deal with death is in part determined
    by our culture and is also constantly evolving.
  • Terror-management theory states that we cope with
    our deep fear of it by actively avoiding the
    thought of death and maintaining an optimistic
    and hopeful world-view.
  • In general, even being casually reminded of
    mortality increases peoples defense of their
    belief system, whatever that may be.

Social and Emotional Developmental Issues
  • The things that you do at an earlier age no doubt
    have some effect on your later life.
  • You can change your life at any age, but the
    earlier you decide what is important to you and
    how you want to spend your limited time, the
    easier it will be to live your life in a
    satisfying and meaningful way.

Module 10.4
  • Temperament, Family, Gender and Cultural
    Influences on Development

Temperament and Lifelong Development
  • Temperament is a persons tendency to be active
    or inactive, outgoing or reserved
  • Research suggests that temperament is stable over
    much of the lifespan.
  • Kagan and his associates were able to strongly
    relate infant temperament to later levels of
  • Genetic influences make contributions to
    temperament, although environment is also a

The Family
  • Research has not shown any reliable connection
    between birth order and personality or other
  • The fact that older and younger children may
    behave in certain ways in the home is probably
    specific to that situation.
  • Family size does appear to have some influence on
    childrens IQ scores, with smaller families
    showing higher IQ scores than larger ones.

  • Figure 10.31
  • Children from small families tend to score higher
    on IQ tests than children from large families.
    However, within a family of a given size, birth
    order is not related to IQ. If we combine results
    for families of different sizes, first borns have
    a higher mean score, but only because many of
    them come from small families. (Adapted from
    Rodgers et al., 2000)

The Effects of Parenting Style
  • Diane Baumrind described four basic styles of
    parenting based on the dimensions of warmth and
  • Authoritative parents impose controls but show
    warmth and encouragement to the child.
  • Authoritarian parents impose control but tend to
    be emotionally distant from the child.
  • Permissive parents are warm but impose few
  • Uninvolved parents are distant and do little more
    than provide resources.

The Effects of Parenting Style
  • Children of authoritative parents tend to be most
    self-reliant and cooperative.
  • Children of authoritarian parents tend to be
    obedient but also distrustful and not very
  • Children of permissive parents are frequently
    socially irresponsible.
  • Children of uninvolved parents tend to be
    impulsive and hard to discipline.

The Effects of Parenting Style
  • Reasonably consistent links have been found
    between the parenting styles and child behavior.
  • These results do not necessarily apply across
    ethnic groups and cultures.
  • It is unclear if the parents behavior shapes the
    childrens behavior the childrens behavior
    shapes the parents, or both are true to some

The Effects of Parenting Style
  • The Nurture Assumption
  • Studies of adopted children and their parents
    show little correlation between parenting style
    and child behavior.
  • Harris and other researchers believe that
    parenting style really only influences child
    behavior at home.
  • Parents exert influence mostly by controlling the
    environment in which the child is being raised.
  • Harris proposes that ultimately the peer group
    will be the most influential shaping force upon
    the personality of the child.

Parental Employment and Child Care
  • Although we tend to assume that western models
    are the norm, child-rearing practices vary
    greatly between world cultures
  • Communal child rearing, use of paid help, and
    many other variations exist from our traditional
    model of the stay-at-home mother.
  • In general, whether loving stay-at-home parents
    rear children or children receive high quality
    day care for part of the day, child development
    proceeds normally.

Nontraditional Families
  • Some models of family life that are considered
    nontraditional are
  • Single mothers
  • Gay and lesbian couples raising children
  • Mother as primary breadwinner while father stays
    at home
  • Research indicates that what matters most is that
    the child has a stable, emotional relationship
    with at least one adult.

Parental Conflict and Divorce
  • Not so long ago, divorce was an unusual outcome
    for marriage
  • An estimated ¾s of African-American and over
    one-third of European-American children will
    experience the divorce of their parents.
  • This may be partly explained by the reduced
    attention and increased economic hardship
    experienced by these children.

Parental Conflict and Divorce
  • It may also be related to the prolonged exposure
    to conflict that often accompanies divorce.
  • The younger the child is when the divorce occurs,
    the milder the effects generally tend to be.
  • Longitudinal studies suggest an increase tendency
    to conflict with parents and other children among
    children of divorce.

Parental Conflict and Divorce
  • During the first year after the divorce, they
    exhibit more attention seeking and pouting
    behavior, and boys tend to be more aggressive at
    home and school.
  • Effects were often worse if a non-working mother
    took a job outside the home immediately
  • Girls frequently have problems adjusting to life
    with a stepfather, but stepsiblings in blended
    families often get along better than do
    biological siblings.

Parental Conflict and Divorce
  • Results vary across cultures, in African-American
    families extended family members often pitch in
    to ease the burden.
  • Children of all backgrounds show a variety of
    adjustment patterns, many are amazingly
  • Should parents stay together for the childrens
  • The answer depends on the level of conflict.
    Children appear to suffer most of all, whether
    parents split up or stay together, when parents
    are constantly battling.

Gender Influences
  • There are many interesting miscellaneous
    differences between men and women.
  • People tend to have strong opinions about what
    causes these differences, but there is little
    basis for certainty about the causes.

Gender Influences
  • Cognitive differences
  • Females tend to perform better in language
    related tasks, especially language fluency.
  • Males generally do better on difficult spatial
    and mathematical tasks.
  • It has been proposed that male ability in spatial
    tasks is related to our early hunter-gatherer
    lifestyle, but male rats seem to exhibit this
    quality also.

Gender Influences
  • Differences in Self-Esteem
  • Males report slightly higher levels of
    self-esteem, with the most pronounced difference
    occurring at adolescence.
  • Psychologists view measures of self-esteem as
    only minimally reliable and valid.
  • Results of studies that examine self-esteem are
    not clearly interpretable.

Gender Influences
  • Differences in Social Situations
  • There are large and consistent differences in
    male and female play, but these are only evident
    in social contexts.
  • Girls play tends to be more cooperative and
    quiet, boys tends to be more competitive and
    more likely to dissolve into disputes about
  • In unsupervised situations, boys often dominate
    and intimidate girls.

Gender Influences
  • Male-Female Relationships
  • It appears that by the time adolescence begins,
    males and females are not well prepared to
    negotiate the complexities of communication
    across sex lines
  • Males are used to demanding what they want, women
    are used to cooperating.
  • Males worry more about their status compared to
    other men women dont usually understand the
    importance of status.
  • Women usually require expressions of sympathy
    from listeners men often fail to understand this
  • These are of course generalizations, and not all
    male-female relationships are hampered by these

Gender Influences
  • Ethnic and Cultural Influences
  • Membership in a minority group molds a persons
    development in two ways
  • The customs of the group may differ significantly
    from those of other groups.
  • Members of the minority group are affected by the
    attitudes of other people who may treat them
    differently or expect certain behaviors of them
    based on stereotypes.

Gender Influences
  • Ethnic and Cultural Influences
  • Acculturation is a transition from feeling
    connected to the culture of origin to feeling
    like part of the culture of a new country.
  • It is a gradual process and may take more than a
    generation to complete.

Gender Influences
  • Ethnic and Cultural Influences
  • Some immigrants remain partially connected to
    their cultural heritage and develop a bicultural
    identity, alternating between memberships in two
    cultures depending on context.
  • To some extent we are all multicultural, as
    varying contexts of work and our social lives may
    present us with different rules and norms to
  • However, for the immigrant or first generation
    resident of the United States, these transitions
    are more pronounced and intense.

Understanding and Accepting the Influences
  • In our growing appreciation of the variety of
    influences on human development, we are moving
    away from a unitary view of the right or
    normal way to grow.
  • We are beginning to understand the reasons for
    the differences, and appreciate the diversity of
    adaptive ways to be ones self in the world.