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Unformatted text preview: PSY 350 PSY Child Psychology
Early Infancy 9/27/10 Outline Outline
Physical Growth Growth of the skull Brain development Sensory Capacities Methods of evaluation Hearing Vision Taste & smell Early Infancy Early
Period that begins at birth & ends at Period approx. 3 months approx. During 1st 3 months, baby will gain approx. 6 pounds & grow more than 4 inches in length inches Circumference of head will increase by Circumference more than an inch more Physical Growth Physical
Growth of skull Primary determinant of growth & shape of Primary the head is developing brain the Bones are separated by fontanels, (“soft Bones fontanels (“soft spots”), spaces separating bones of the skull in early infancy skull At this stage, bones are separated rather At separated than fused together, allowing them to expand to rapidly developing brain expand Physical Growth Physical
Brain development At birth, brain has most of the nerve cells At (neurons) it will ever have, but will still it grow 4x larger by adulthood grow Information is transmitted by neurons Information neurons (nerve cells) (nerve Brain is composed of complex Brain communication system of neuron networks networks Neurons transmit information one of two ways: two 1) Sending information via small electrical 1) impulses along its axon, a branch that axon branch reaches out to connect with other brain cells; and cells; 2) By receiving information from axons of 2) other cells through dendrites dendrites Reasons for growth in brain size Reasons Increase in size & complexity of Increase information-receiving dendrites and information-receiving information-transmitting axons information-transmitting Growth of myelin, sheath of fatty cells that Growth myelin sheath insulates certain axons & speeds transfer of information from one neuron to the next of Myelinated axons transmit signals 10-100x Myelinated faster than unmyelinated axons, resulting faster resulting in more effective communication of brain in Sensory Capacities Sensory
Sense of touch & smell are more Sense advanced than vision advanced Methods of evaluating Present infants with stimulus & observe Present behavioral or physiological response E.g., flash a light, watch for turn of head or E.g., change in rate of sucking pacifier change Present two stimuli at once to measure Present preference (how long infant looks at it) preference Methods for evaluating (cont.) Methods Present novel stimulus to capture Present attention (e.g., musical tone) until infant gets bored & stops paying attention gets Habituation: attention to novelty decreases attention with continued exposure with Dishabituation: showing renewed interest showing after change in stimulus is presented (e.g., change in pitch of musical tone); can conclude infant perceives change conclude Hearing Hearing
Newborns able to distinguish sound of Newborns human voice from other sounds & seem to prefer it seem Preference for speech directed to them Preference that has high pitch & slow, exaggerated pronunciation pronunciation I.e., “baby talk”, “motherese”, “infantdirected speech” Preference for native language Hearing Hearing
Infants are sensitive to the smallest Infants sound categories in human speech that distinguish meanings, phonemes phonemes E.g., p in pat, b in bat E.g., pat in bat Vision Vision
Lens of eye & cells of retina are Lens somewhat immature, limiting visual sharpness sharpness Movements of eyes are not coordinated Movements enough to align images on two retinas to form clear image to Vision is thus very blurry Vision Vision
Visual acuity, sharpness of vision Newborns are very nearsighted (see closer Newborns objects more clearly) objects Visual acuity is 20/300 to 20/600 Visual I.e., can see at 20 ft. what adults can see at I.e., 300 to 600 ft. 300 Vision Vision Visual system allows them to see objects Visual about a foot away (e.g., mother’s face when nursing) when Allows for eye contact which has Allows important social implications important By 2-3 months: infants can coordinate By vision of both their eyes Vision Vision
Perception of Patterns & Objects Preference for patterned figures, such as Preference faces & concentric circles (“bullseye”), rather than plain ones rather Visually perceive world as more than Visually random confusion random By 2 months, may be able to see By boundaries between objects & recognize objects as three-dimensional (best under conditions of high contrast) conditions Vision Vision
Color Perception Newborns appear to possess nearly all of Newborns the physiological prerequisites for seeing color color By 2 months: ability to perceive different By colors appears to approach adult levels colors Vision Vision
Perception of Faces Infants able to distinguish diagram of Infants normal faces from jumbled face; prefer normal face normal Taste & Smell Taste
Preference for things that taste & smell Preference sweet (e.g., breast milk) sweet Sweet tastes have calming effect on Sweet crying babies & diminishes indications of pain of Taste & Smell Taste
Preferences also influenced by culture Studies suggest indirect exposure to Studies different flavors (prenatally & during breastfeeding) can affect newborn’s taste preferences preferences Taste & Smell Taste
Newborns can discriminate between Newborns diff. odors: diff. Within minutes of being born, will react to Within maternal breast odors (guide them to nipple) nipple) In studies of reactions to various odors, In findings that they react to unpleasant odors (garlic, vinegar) by pursing lips or wrinkling noses wrinkling Smile in response to something that Smile smells sugary smells Intermodal perception Intermodal
Simultaneous perceiving of an object or event Simultaneous by more than one sensory system (e.g., touch, sound, and vision) touch, Studies: Newborns prevented from hearing mother’s voice Newborns unable to recognize mother’s face in experimental (preference) test (preference) Suggests that intermodal perception of maternal Suggests face AND voice is essential for newborns to learn unique features of mother’s face unique ...
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This note was uploaded on 04/04/2011 for the course PSYCH 350 taught by Professor J.mojica during the Fall '10 term at CSU Dominguez Hills.
- Fall '10