Developmental Websites, Psychology Department
*Society for Research in Child Development
PROFESSOR: Dr. Mandy B. Medvin
Rm 131 Hoyt, Ph: 7360, e-mail: email@example.com
Office Hours: MWF 10:30-11:30; T/Th 2-3; after class or by appointment
Sroufe, L. A., Cooper, R. G., & DeHart, G. B. (2000). Child development: It's nature and course (4th edition). New York: McGraw-Hill, Inc.
Filipovic, Z. (1993). Zlata's diary. New York: Penguin Books, Inc.
BRIEF COURSE DESCRIPTION: An overview of child and adolescent development.
INTRODUCTION AND COURSE GOALS FOR CHILDHOOD AND ADOLESCENCE:
The year 2000 ushers in a new era in the study of child development. On one hand, scientists have an increasingly better understanding of how difficult events early in a child's life can lead later struggles in adolescence and adulthood. With this knowledge, they are reaching out to develop partnerships with community leaders to design interventions for children and their families. Alternatively, issues such as community violence, child abuse, teenage pregnancy, drug and alcohol abuse, poverty, etc., still are very prominent in our national consciousness.
In this course, we will first strive to examine basic developmental processes in children--both "how" they change over time, and "why" this change occurs. Next, we will examine individual differences among children, and whether or not such 'traits' remain the same across time. Finally, we will focus the application of this knowledge to both risk and resiliency issues in development.
Our course objectives are as follows:
1. To examine basic research findings describing physical, cognitive, and social development from infancy through adolescence using a chronological approach.
2. To explore theoretical and methodological foundations in the study of child development.
3. To understand the familial and cultural context of development.
4. To obtain experience observing and conducting research with children and adolescents.
5. To enhance library research, writing, and presentation skills.
I strongly believe in the lecture and discussion format. There is certain information from the scientific literature that I want to share with you. In addition, I want to hear your input as well--your ideas, opinions, and interpretations of the data, as well your own experiences.
Class time will therefore consist of lecture and discussion, and will also involve videos and peer presentations where appropriate. At times we will divide up into problem solving groups to extend our classroom work. I encourage an active, open format, where students ask questions and participate in class discussions. To facilitate this format, and to maximize learning, students should attend all classes, read the materials prior to coming to class, and be both attentive and involved.
|EXAMS AND QUIZZES||60%|
To pass the class, all assignments must be completed.
EXAMS AND QUIZZES: There will be three exams in this class, each covering 1/3 of the class, and will consist of both objective and essay items. Reading quizzes may also be given on the first day a chapter is due--these quizzes provide motivation for reading the book, as well as help you prepare for the exams.
Research Presentation: You will conduct "hands-on" research with children and/or adolescents, and present that research to the class. Specifically, you will choose a project from a list of possibilities that I provide in class. Working in small groups, you will conduct the activity and present the results in class. Where possible, we will make videotapes of your research to facilitate the presentation. Presentations will occur at the appropriate times for the class topics, and the dates are noted on the project descriptions. Further details will be discussed during the lecture on methods.
Paper: Each student will be required to write a 7-page paper on a topic of interest relating to child or adolescent development. This assignment requires you to actively interpret the literature, synthesize information, and form a conclusion. Further details will be discussed in class.
ACTIVITIES: There will be several smaller projects scheduled during the semester. All of these are designed to enhance your "hands-on" view of children, through observations, explorations of children's toys or books, or other activities. Some possible activities are as follows:
Pregnancy Survey: You will learn survey techniques by interviewing women who have had children (recent, mother, grandmother, or great-grandmother). We will discuss these findings in class.
Observation: You will conduct observations of children in the Westminster College Preschool Lab using a list of "guiding" questions. We will discuss these observations in class. You will then summarize these observations in the form of a narrative, and compare them to your readings, as well as your other experiences with children. Your ability to interpret your observations based on what we are learning in class is important for this assignment.
Toy survey: You will analyze the
contents of several toy catalogs, and then write a guide for parents about
your toy recommendations. This guide will include, among other things,
a discussion of the toy's educational benefits, ability to stimulate play,
age-appropriateness, usefulness for physical, cognitive, and social development,
and gender typed versus gender neutral quality.
FINAL GRADE: The grading scale will be as follows:
Percent of Work Mastered
LIST OF TOPICS AND ASSIGNMENTS: The specific dates may change (for example,
if we need additional time for the research presentations), but the order
will remain the same. Changes will be announced in class.
|WEEK||DATE||TOPIC||READINGS & ASSIGNMENTS|
|UNIT I: INTRODUCTION TO CHILD PSYCHOLOGY|
|1||August 29||Introduction||Ch 1|
|August 31||Theories||Ch 1|
|2||Sept 5--class begins at 10:00 a.m.||Methods/Models||Ch 1/Ch2; Choose research project|
|Sept 7||Contexts of Development||Ch 2|
|UNIT II:EARLY BEGINNINGS: PRENATAL DEVELOPMENT AND INFANCY (0-1 years)|
|3||Sept 12||Heredity & Prenatal Development||Ch 3; Pregnancy and Childbirth Survey Due|
|Sept 14||Heredity & Prenatal Development||Ch 3; Provide research plan, draft 1|
|4||Sept 19||Infancy: First Adaptations||Ch 4|
|Sept 21||Infancy: Cognitive Development||Ch 5; Paper Topic Due|
|5||Sept 26||Infancy: Cognitive Development||Ch 5|
|Sept 28||Exam 1||Chs 1-5|
|6||October 3||Infancy: Social Development||Ch 6|
|October 5||Infancy: Social Development||Ch 6|
|7||October 10||Toddlerhood: Language Dev|
|UNIT III: TODDLERHOOD: TRANSITION TO CHILDHOOD (1-2.5 years)|
|October 12||Toddlerhood: Social Dev||Ch 7|
|8||October 17||Toddlerhood: Social Dev||Ch 8|
|October 19||Early Childhood: Cognitive Dev||Ch 9|
|UNIT IV: EARLY CHILDHOOD (2.5-5 years)|
|October 26||Early Childhood: Cognitive Dev||Ch 9|
|10||October 31||Early Childhood: Social Dev||Ch 10|
|November 2||Early Childhood: Social Dev||Ch 10|
|11||November 7||Exam 2||Chs 6-10|
|UNIT V: MIDDLE CHILDHOOD (6-12 years)|
|November 9||Middle Childhood: Cognitive Dev||Ch 11|
|12||November 14||Middle Childhood: Social Dev||Ch 12|
|November 16||Middle Childhood: Social Dev||Ch 12/Zlata, beginning-W, Feb 15,1992.|
|UNIT VI: ADOLESCENCE (12-18? years)|
|13||November 21||Adolescence: Physical & Cognitive Dev||Ch 13/Paper Due|
|November 22-26||THANKSGIVING BREAK|
|14||November 28||Adolescence: Social Dev||Ch 14|
|November 30||Adolescence: Social Dev||Ch 14; Ch 15 pp.530-535|
|UNIT VII: DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOPATHOLOGY (all ages)|
|15||December 5||Developmental Psychopathology||Ch 15/Zlata, the rest of the book; Zivcic article|
|December 7||Developmental Psychopathology||Ch 15|
|December 13-16||FINAL PERIOD||Chs 11-15, Zlata; Zivcic article|