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Year of entry: 2022
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Course unit details:
Introduction to Developmental Psychology
|Unit level||Level 1|
|Teaching period(s)||Semester 1|
|Offered by||Division of Psychology and Mental Health|
|Available as a free choice unit?||No|
In this unit, we discover the developmental processes that have resulted in the unique individuals who are enrolled on this unit.
In this unit, students will be introduced to the study of development as a core discipline within psychology. The first thing we will do is to discuss why we should study development, and how we should study development -- because we cannot necessarily ask young children questions, or get their informed consent to take part in experiments, we have to be creative and think of new ways to investigate their understanding and capabilities.
From there, we move on to present prominent theories of development (e.g. Piaget, and Socio-cultural approaches) and why theories of how we develop are so important.
We then lead into overviews of the current state of the fields of perceptual, motor, cognitive, biological, social, and emotional development.
This unit aims to:
Provide students with an overview of human development from infancy to late childhood. On successful completion of this unit students will:
- Understand the importance of understanding how humans develop – in their cultural context – in order to fully understand human behaviour
- Understand theories of development – and their usefulness in making novel predictions – with special reference to constructivist and socio-cognitive approaches.
- Appreciate the methodology used to study child development, and how research methodologies progress to allow a more complete understanding of the capabilities of the child.
- Have a good understanding of cognitive development – including perceptual, motor, and language development – in childhood and how this underpins successful adult behaviour.
- Understand the child as a social being, with particular reference to social and emotional development, attachment relationships, and the child’s understanding of themselves in their environment.
Teaching and learning methods
This unit will be taught via lectures and seminars.
All content, supplementary reading, resources, and a monitored discussion board will be available via the unit Blackboard site.
Knowledge and understanding
Appreciate the importance of the study of development to the understanding of human behaviour
Read and evaluate current research literature
Recognise the limitations imposed by particular design decisions
Understand how knowledge accumulates in developmental psychology
Compare theoretical predictions and empirical findings in the field of development
Objectively interpret the results of analyses in the context of the research design
Evaluate commonly used methodology in developmental psychology
Transferable skills and personal qualities
Present information, ideas and arguments in written form; sustain and develop cogent and coherent arguments
Written exam worth 100%
Students will receive a grade and written feedback will be available on request.
Seigler, R., DeLoache, J., Eisenberg, N., & Saffran, J. (2017). How Children Develop (5th international edition). New York: Worth
|Independent study hours|
|Jennifer Mcbride||Unit coordinator|