1. Developmental Science
    Field of study devoted to understanding constancy and change throughout the lifespan
  2. Theory
    Orderly, integrated set of statements that describes, explains, and predicts behavior.
  3. Continuous
    A process of gradually augmenting the same types of skills that were there to begin with
  4. Discontinuous
    A process in which new ways of understanding and responding to the world emerge at specific times
  5. Stages
    Qualitative changes in thinking, feeling, and behaving that characterize specific periods of development.
  6. Contexts
    Unique combinations of personal and environmental circumstances that can result in different paths of change.
  7. Nature-Nurture Controversy
    Are genetic or evironmental factors more important?
  8. Four assumptions that make up lifespan perspective
    • 1) Lifelong
    • 2) Multidimensional & multidirectional
    • 3) Highly plastic
    • 4) Affected by multiple, interacting forces
  9. Age-graded Influences
    Events that are strongly related to age and therefore fairly predictable in when they occur and how long they last
  10. Resilience
    The ability to adapt effectively in the face of threats to development
  11. History-graded Influences
    Explain why people born around the same time tend to be alike in ways that set them apart from people born at other times
  12. Nonnormative Influences
    Events that are irregular: they happen to just one person or a few people and do not follow a predictable timetable
  13. Normative Approach
    Measures of behavior are taken on large numbers of individuals, and age related averages are computed to represent typical development.
  14. Psychoanalytic Perspective
    States that people move through a series of stages in which they confront conflicts between biological drives and social expectations. How these conflicts are resolved determines the person's ability to learn, to get along with others, and to cope with anxiety.
  15. Psychosexual Theory
    Emphasizes that how parents manage their child's sexual and aggressive drives in the first few years is crucial for healthy personality development
  16. Erikson's Psychosocial Theory
    Emphasizes that in addition to mediating between id impulses and super-ego demands, the ego makes a positive contribution to development, acquiring attitudes and skills at each stage that make the individual an active, contributing member of society.
  17. Behaviorism
    Directly observable events-stimuli and responses-are the appropriate focus of study.
  18. Bandura's Social Learning Theory
    Empasizes modeling, also known as imitation or observational learning, as powerful source of development.
  19. Behavior Modifications
    Consists of procedures that combine conditioning and modeling to eliminate undesirable behaviors and increase desirable responses.
  20. Piaget's Congnitive-developmental Theory
    States that children actively construct knowledge as they manipulate and explore their world.
  21. Information Processing
    Persepctive that the human mind might also be viewed as a symbol-manipulating system through which information flows
  22. Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience
    Brings togther researchers from psychology, biology, neuroscience, and medicine to study the relationship between changes in the brain and the developing person's cognitive processing and behavior patterns.
  23. Ethology
    Is concerned with the adaptive, or survival, value of behavior and it's evolutionary history
  24. Sensitive Period
    A time that is optimal for certain capacities to emerge and in which the individual is especially responsive to environmental influences. However, its boundaries are less well-defines than those of a critical period. Development can occur later, but it is harder to induce.
  25. Evolutionary Developmental Psychology
    Seeks to understand the adaptive value of specieswife cognitive, emotional, and social competencies as those competencies change with age.
  26. Sociocultural Theory
    Focuses on how culture is transmitted to the next generation. According to Vygotsky social interation -In particular, cooperative dialogues with more knowledgable members of society- is necessary for children to acquire the ways of thinking and behaving that make up a community's culture.
  27. Culture
    The values, beliefs, customs, and skills of a social group
  28. Ecological Systems Theory
    Views the person as devliping within a complex system of relationships affected by multiple levels of the surrounding environment
  29. Microsystem
    Consists of activites and interaction patterns in the person's immediate surroundings. (First level of Bronfenbrenner's model)
  30. Mesosystem
    Encompasses connections between microsystems. (Second level of Bronfrenbrenner's model)
  31. Exosystem
    Consists of social settings that do not contain the developing person but nevertheless affect experiences in immediate settings. (Third level of Bronfenbrenner's model)
  32. Macrosystem
    Consists of cultural values, laws, customs, and resources. (Fourth level of Bronfenbrenner's model)
  33. Chronosystem
    Life changes can be imposed extrenally, or, alternatively, can arise from within the person, since idviduals select, modify, and create many of their own settings and experiences. (Fifth, or temporal demension, of Brondenbrenner's model)
  34. Naturalistic Obersvation
    Approach of going into the field, or natural environment, and recording the behavior of interest.
  35. Structured Observations
    The investigator sets up a laboratory situation that evokes the bahavior of interest so that every participant has an equal opportunity to display the response.
  36. Clinical Interview
    Researchers use a flexible, conversational style to probe for the participant's point of view.
  37. Structured Interviews
    (Including tests and questionnaires) Each participant is asked the same set of questions in the same way.
  38. Clinical, or case study, method
    Brings together a wide range of information on one person, including interviews, observations, and sometimes test scores.
  39. Ethnography
    Like the clinical method, a descriptive, qualitative technique. But instead of aiming to understand a single individual, it is directed toward understanding a culture or a distinct social group through participant observation.
  40. Correlation Design
    Researchers gather information on individuals, generally in natural life circumstances, without altering their experience. Then they look at relationships between participants' characteristics and their behavior or development.
  41. Correlation Coefficent
    A number that decribes how two measures, or variables, are associated with each other.
  42. Experimental Design
    Permits inferences about cause and effect because researchers use an evenhanded procedure to assign people to two or more treatment conditions.
  43. Independent Variable
    The one the investigator expects to cause changes in another variable.
  44. Dependent Variable
    The one the investigator expects to be influenced by the independent variable.
  45. Random Assignment
    Using an unbiased procedure, such as drawing numbers out of a hat or flipping a coin, investigators increase the chances that participants' characteristics will be equally distributed across treatment groups.
  46. Longitudinal Design
    Participants are studied repeatedly, and changes are noted as they get older.
  47. Cohort Effects
    Individuals born in the same time period are influenced by a particular set of historical and cultural conditions. Results based on one cohort may not apply to people developing at other times.
  48. Cross-sectional Design
    Groups of people differing in age are studied at the same point in time.
  49. Sequential Designs
    Conducting seceral similar cross-sectional or longitudinal studies at varing times.
  50. Nature
    Inborn biological givens - the hereditary information we receive from out parents at the moment of conception.
  51. Nurture
    Complex forces of the physical and social world that influence our biological makeup and psychological experiences before and after birth.
  52. Stability
    Individuals who are high or low in a characteristic will remain so at later ages
  53. Plasticity
    Change is possible and even likely if new experiences support it.
  54. Maturalational Process
    A genetically determined series of events that unfold automatically
  55. Id
    Largest protion of the mind, is the source of basic biological needs and desires.
  56. Ego
    The conscious, rational part of personality, emerges in early infancy to redirect the id's impulses so they are dischared in acceptable ways.
  57. Superego
    Or conscience, develops through interactions with parents, who insist that children conform to the values of society.
  58. Classical Conditioning
    Associating a neutral stimulus with another stumulus that produces a reflexive response.
  59. Operant Conditioning Theory
    Frequency of a behavior can be increased by following it with a wide variety of reinforcers. It can also be decreased through punishment.
Card Set
Vocab cards for Chapter one of Life Span Psychology