Comparing Maternal Care Counteracts Behavioral Effects of Prenatal Environmental
Stress in Female Rats and Prenatal Psychobiological Predictors of Anxiety Risk in
Three Key Elements to Talking about Nature/Nurture
Genotype: the genetic material an individual inherits
Phenotype: the observable expression of the genotype, including body characteristics and
What is Child Development?
A very broad field, encompassing biological, motor, cognitive, social, emotional, and clinical
fields of psychology
What are the big themes?
Development is a Process
Exclusively breastfeed until 6 months of age
Breastfeed plus food until at least 12 months
Continue breastfeeding as long as mutually desired by mom and child
Although breast milk is free and nutritionally superior, the majorit
When does it occur?
In the 3rd trimester (after the 6th month of gestation)
Earliest period in which it has been demonstrated
How do infants learn?
Like we all do - through our senses
Fetuses develop the capacity to learn
Event related potential (ERP) Research
What are they recording?
Measuring electrical signals
Children undergo lots of significant changes in the brain.
FMRIs measure blood flow in the brain
Not easily done on infants
Not for timing b
Why study child development?
1. Raising children
2. Choosing social policies
a. Classroom structure, daycare center, recommendations for tv viewing
3. Understanding Human Nature
4. Figuring out what the normal developmental trajectory is
5. Looking at how
How do we study development?
At first, it was not very scientific
Watch your own child, write down what he/she does
But it is now a true scientific field
Follows the scientific method
Use various proven methods for collecting data
The Scientific Method
First paper: due October 14th
Compare a news article with the scientific paper.
Dont write date on cover page
when referring to a specific article/finding, or summarizing/paraphrasing, dont
use direct quotes
Article Discussion #1
Mini puberty - peak in testosterone levels during 1-3 months of age
3 different ways they tested testosterone:
1. Amniotic fluid
2. Umbilical cord
Had to control when they tested testosterone levels, not to test at the peak
Expressive Language: Producing Sound
1. Crying (0 minutes)
a. Communicates needs
b. Although parents think that they can interpret their babys cries, they need context
2. Cooing (1-2 months)
a. Sounds like ooh - first sounds other than cryin
Security Blankets and Origins of Attachment
The relationship between a mother and child involves a special bond. A bond that helps
children venture outside the comforting walls o
Vocabulary Spurt and Symbols
First words are spoken between 10-13 months
Word spurt/naming explosion ~ 18 months, productive vocabulary 3-1000 words
~ 24 months, sentences emerge
First sentences are usually very short (often consistin
Infant Perception & Cognition
How do we study it?
A. Looking Time Measures
1. Preferential Looking
a. Present two stimuli side-by-side and measure how long infant looks to each side
Example from change detection video in class
Premise: infants have
NEW TOPIC: MIDTERM 2 STARTS HERE
Theories of Development
Piagets conservation of number task
Video: child counts number of animal crackers lined up side by side. When they are lined up
equally he thinks there is the same amount. When they are lined up un
Video: Why is this so remarkable?
Pauses in speech
Understands so many things about language, without being able to say any words
What makes language special?
Universal - occurs quickly ever
Understanding of Agency and Social Groups
Characteristic of Agents
Understanding of agency is a part of core knowledge
Core Knowledge theory suggests that there are a small number of separable systems
that form the foundations of our development. These
Theories of Development
Child as active learner, well-equipped product of evolution
Innate, specialized learning mechanisms for domain-specific knowledge of
Physics, number, psychology, biology, language, agency
Theory about the startin
Continuation of Infant Cognition
Response-Contingent Measure/Operant Conditioning
Touch-screen study: child learns to touch the side that moves because he gets a prize, rather
than when he touches the other side it doesnt move and he doesnt get a prize
True or false?
If you carry the baby high, you are having a girl. FALSE
If you have a ravenous appetite during pregnancy, you are more likely to have a boy.
Faster fetal heart rates (>140 bpm) means girl. FALSE
Extreme morning sickness