PSY402_L1 - What are some operational definitions of an...

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What are some operational definitions of an adult? - How do we define adult? o Age (differs in cultures); easy to measure - How do we define development? o Maturation o Growth o Change (stages of development) o How abilities grow or decline o Patterns of stability (are certain abilities staying the same?) - Why study adult development? o Personal enrichment; knowing what to expect about your future development o You will have a better understanding of aging relatives; you will be more informed about what to expect o You will feel more optimistic about growing old o You can make better choices to influence a healthier development The History of Adult Development - For a long time, the study of development, was based only on children and child development. - Clearly, however, there is something more going on. - In the 1920’s there were studies on late adulthood development, under the title of aging. Everything in between childhood and late adulthood was being ignored. - In the 1940’s Gerontology was established as a research field - Finally, in 1959, lifespan theory was proposed by Erickson, which states that we need to consider the entire lifespan. We tend to break the lifespan down into different periods: Chronological ages: - Prenatal (0 - 9mo.) - Infancy and toddlerhood (9mo. – 3 years) - Preschool/early childhood (3 – 6y) - Middle childhood(6 – 8y) - Adolescence (8 – 20y) - Young adulthood (20 – 40y) - Middle adulthood (40 – 65y) - Late adulthood (65 - death) o Young old (65 – 74y) o Old old (75 – 84y) o Oldest old (85+)
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Some people argue that it is more important to look at functional age.
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