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Outline_Part_Two - Part Two DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY 1...

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Part Two DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY 1. Developmental psychology concerns systematic changes over the life course 2. Goal is to identify the changes and determine their sources Focus largely on children Changes happen quickly and are easier to see Early experience may be especially important Assessing nature vs nurture requires looking early Life-span development PRENATAL ISSUES 1. Inheritance of characteristics Chromosomes with genes Genes make people all alike, but also make people different 2. Behavioral genetics: the study of how behavioral or psychological qualities are genetically influenced 3. An early example: PKU, caused by a specific genetic defect Creates metabolic problem, results in severe retardation Special diet can prevent it (but nutrasweet is toxic to them) 4. More ordinary psychological qualities have been studied since 5. Twin study method MZ (monozygotic) twins are 100% the same genetically Started from same egg, exact same genes that split DZ (dizygotic) twins are 50% the same genetically on average Fraternal twins, two different eggs and sperm Correlate MZ pairs with each other, same-sex DZ pairs with each other Compare correlations, to create index of heritability 6. Twin studies show that temperaments of activity level, emotionality, and sociability are genetically influenced Temperaments are biologically based, normal tendencies, w/ pervasive influences on behavior, and which differ in degree from person to person Activity level- can’t sit still, walk fast, etc.
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Emotionally- negative/positive in valence Sociability- extent to which the individual wants to be with others 7. Another method of behavior genetics is adoption research- child with adoptive parents vs. child with biological parents Molecular genomes- Kind of like behavioral genetics Actually looking at genes Research linking specific genetic locations either to a broad outcome (disorder) or to a biological function (neurotransmitter) Effects of genes are turned on/off by environmental context Prenatal maternal stress can influence the responsiveness of a gene later in life From temperaments emerge personality Recent research suggests that many behaviors are influenced by genetics 8. After conception, other pre-natal influences Biological and chemical entities can cross into fetal blood Rubella, HIV, alcohol, nicotine, cocaine 9. Birth as an extraordinarily disruptive event Huge changes in how things happen, very sudden Big fast changes for both, breathing, eating, sights, sounds, the air 10. Maturation as a biological factor during pregnancy and childhood Growth in nervous system that does not depend on experience Suspect a role for maturation when a behavior is not there, no matter how you try, then suddenly it emerges Nerve cells grow more dendrites and become denser 11. Heredity, maturation, learning as 3 inter-dependent influences SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT 1. Socialization is the process of creating normal social being from infant (life-long process) 2. Attachment of infant to mother (or other)
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