Human Growth and Development : SS - 520

COURSE DESCRIPTION (from College Catalog):

A study of the changes in behavior and mental processes across the life-span and the biological, psychological, social and cultural factors influencing those changes.

TEXT BOOK:
Sigelman, C. K. & Rider, E. A. Life-Span Human Development (fifth edition).

Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth, 2006.

COURSE POLICY: academic integrity, attendance, exams, and final grades

1. ACADEMIC INTEGRITY:

the Department of Social Sciences Academic Integrity Policy adheres to the standards described in the Academic Integrity Policy of Queensborough Community College (see College Catalog). Within the framework of the college policy sanctions for violations of academic integrity are left to the discretion of the instructor. Students may appeal sanctions to the department chair who will refer the appeal to a departmental Committee on Academic Integrity for review.

2. ATTENDANCE:

you are expected to follow the College Catalog attendance requirements (from the first day, 15% of class meetings, excessive lateness, etc.). Please note that your grade may be affected by your attendance record.

3. EXAMS:

there will be three exams with no make-up exam for either Exam I or Exam II; if you miss either of them, you must take a cumulative final which will count double: if you miss both of them, you cannot receive a passing grade for the course.

4. FINAL GRADES:

if you are dissatisfied with your grade on either of the first two exams, you may elect to take a cumulative final exam and have it count as 50% of your grade; no exam grade will be dropped and no final grade will be changed.


OBJECTIVE:

This course is designed to explain, via the interaction of heredity and environment, psychological development throughout the life cycle. Anemphasis is placed on early development and its importance in setting the basic foundation for human development. However, the entire life span is examined by the use of a topical approach to the research, theories, and applications of the various components of the developmental process. Topics selected from the following will be explored:

A. AN OVERVIEW OF THE DISCIPLINE:

definition and discussion of psychological development, including its history, goals, terminology, and controversies; a complete life-span perspective

Chapter 1: Understanding Life-Span Human Development (pages 1-10)

Chapter 2: Theories of Human Development (pages 27-30)

B. RESEACH METHODOLOGY:

the scientific method and techniques for scientific data collection; introspection vs. observation and correlation vs. experiment; cross-sectional, longitudinal, and sequential research designs; research problems and research ethics

Chapter 1: Understanding Life-Span Human Development (pages 11-21)

C. HEREDITY AND ENVIRONMENT:

gene/environment interactions and correlations; biology, genetics, maturation (nature) and society, culture, learning (nurture) as they combine to influence development; the genetic code, hereditary mechanisms, and genetic counseling; focus on genetics

Chapter 3: Genes, Environment, and Development

EXAMINATION I: CHAPTERS 1, pages 27-30 in 2, and 3

D. PRENATAL, BIRTH, AND EARLY POSTNATAL DEVELOPMENT:

stages of prenatal development; teratogens as prenatal environmental influences; birth and its potential physical and psychological impact; the perinatal environment and the early postnatal environment; focus on environment

Chapter 4: Prenatal Development and Birth

E. PERCEPTUAL DEVELOPMENT:

assessing perceptual abilities; changes in vision, hearing, taste, smell, and touch across the life span; how sensation and perception are used to gain knowledge of reality; temperament and its role in later development; the infant’s organizational abilities and the principles that govern early developmental patterns

Chapter 6: Perception

Chapter 11: Self and Personality (pages 291-294)

EXAMINATION II: CHAPTERS 4, 6, and pages 291-294 in 11

F. JEAN PIAGET AND COGNITIVE THEORIES:

stage-by-stage presentation of Piaget’s theory; critique of Piaget, including contributions, challenges, and comparisons with other cognitive theorists; cognitive development and its applications to education

Chapter 7: Cognition; Chapter 2: (pages 41-44)

G. INTELLIGENCE AND THE IQ TEST:

definition and measurement of intelligence; theories of intelligence; reliability of the psychometric IQ test approach; range of IQ and extremes in intelligence; factors that influence IQ scores; predictability, stability, and change in intelligence with age

Chapter 9: Intelligence and Creativity

H. LANGUAGE DEVELOPMENT:

what is and is not language; psycholinguistic research; the acquisition and development of language in the child; the role that language plays in the thinking process; the learning, nativist, and interactionist perspectives

Chapter 10: Language and Education (pages 254-265)

I. SIGMUND FREUD AND ERIK ERIKSON:

contrasts between two psychoanalytic positions; emotional-personality development and the traditional psychosexual stages; socio-cultural determinants of development and the newer psychosocial stages

Chapter 2: (pages 30-35); Chapter 11: (pages 311-314)

J. AGES AND PHASES OF DEVELOPMENT:

selected psychological issues in adolescence, adulthood, and especially aging/old age; major trends and themes in the study of human development; concluding summary of the life span

Epilogue: Fitting the Pieces Together (pages 511-521)

EXAMINATION III: CHAPTERS to be determined