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PSY 118 Ch. 1

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Daniel Gaona

on 27 March 2018

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Transcript of PSY 118 Ch. 1

Science of human development
seeks to understand how & why
people change over time
Growth is:
The Study of human development is a science
Thus, it depends on:
critical thinking
sound methodology
Researchers ask questions & seek answers in order to understand "how? & why?"
The Scientific Method
1. Pose a question (usually based off a theory, prior research, or personal observation)
2. Develop a hypothesis (a specific prediction)
3. Test hypothesis (Design & conduct an experiment. Collect empirical data)
4. Analyze evidence/data (Decide whether hypothesis is supported or not)
5. Report the results (Share the data, conclusion)
6. Replication: repeating the experiment
Nature vs. Nurture
AKA heredity vs. environment, maturation vs. learning.
How much of any characteristic, behavior, or emotion is the result of genes? & How much is the result of experience?
Neither belief is accurate!
The questions is how much?
which one?
Nature affects Nurture & Nurture affects Nature
The Lifespan Perspective
An approach to human development that takes into account all phases of life
Develop your own age ranges
for stages of development
Ex. Childhood 0-10 years of age
Early Childhood
Middle Childhood
Emerging Adulthood
Late Adulthood
0-2 years
2-6 years
6-11 years
11-18 years
18-25 years
25-65 years
65 years +
Age ranges for different stages of development
Development is multidirectional
Development is multidirectional
Discontinuity: fast & dramatic
Continuity: slow & gradual
No Change
Sex chromosomes
XY or XX
Development is multidirectional
Humans experience:
-simple growth
-radical transformation
These changes occur:
-day to day
-year to year
-generation to generation
Development is multidirectional
Pace & Direction vary
Loss & Gain can occur at the same time
Ex. babies lose ability to distinguish sounds from other language when they begin talking
Critical period
: time when a specific type of developmental growth (body or behavior) must occur
Ex. human embryo grows arms,
legs, hands, feet, fingers, & toes
28-54 days after conception.
If ingested during 26 days
of arm development
If ingested day 28 or after day 54 no harmed occurred
Sensitive period
: time when a certain type of development is most likely to happen (or happens easily/quickly) but may occur later with more difficulty
Ex. language learning in childhood
Development is multicontextual
Contexts include:
climate, population density
marital status, family size, member's age & sex
Urban, suburban, rural, multiethnic
Historical Context
: a group defined by shared age of members, who because of age move through life together, experiencing the same historical events & cultural shifts
Ex. Baby boomers 1946-1964
Gen X 1965-1980
Millennial born after 1980
Socioeconomic Context
Socioeconomic Status (SES)
: a person's position in society as determined by income, wealth, occupation, education, & place of residence (aka social class)
Why is psychology

Development is multicultural
To understand human development all humans (cultures) must be studied
: a system of shared beliefs, norms, behaviors, & expectations that persist over time & define social behavior & assumptions
Set of ideas, beliefs, & patterns (norms) shared by a group
Development is multicultural
Ethnic group
: people whose ancestors were born in the same region & who often share a language, culture, & religion.
: a group of people who are regarded
by themselves or by others
as distinct from other groups based on physical appearance.
*Race is a misleading concept as biological differences are not signified by outward appearance.
Genes make us more different than physical appearance
Development is multidisciplinary
Development is best understood by examining development through numerous academic fields.
The main fields include:
Development is Plastic
: Human traits can be molded & can maintain a certain durability.
Ex. Intelligence & Personality
What is Science?
Science provides us with
a way (method) of:
1. learning about reality through systematic observation & experimentation
2. obtaining logical & objective results
Objective: based on facts
Subjective: based on feelings/opinions

Unbiased: not showing an unfair tendency to believe some people, ideas, etc are better than others.
Critical Thinking
1. What am I being asked to believe or accept?
2. What evidence supports this position?
3. Are there other ways this evidence can be interpreted?
4. What other evidence would I need to evaluate these alternatives?
5. What are the most reasonable conclusions?
A way of evaluating information
1. Science relies on facts
2. Science uses systematic
Science attempts to develop and test theories.

Theory: an idea or set of ideas that is intended to explain facts and/or events.
"If A happens then B will be the result"
Modus Ponens:
If A, then B
Therefore, B
"Shown to be false"
"It can be tested"
Critical Thinking
The ability to think:
1. Clearly
2. Rationally
3. Independently
Essential to scientific reasoning
1. Must be
2. Must be

Imagine situations in which the hypothesis can be false.
Evaluated by using the scientific method
All planets outside our solar system are uninhabited.

If you play violent video games you will behave violently.
Next Step?

Collect Data (Conduct research)
How do Psychologists

Descriptive Methods
Examples: Interviews, personality tests, cognitive tests (memory, intelligence), medical records, school records, police records.
Case Study
: in depth analysis of a person's behavior and cognition.
Michael Carneal
Dec 1, 1997
-14 years old
-Killed 3 Students &
injured 5 more students
-Played violent video games
Case Study
: Can not be applied to large populations
: Ability to examine unique cases
Descriptive Methods
Naturalistic Observation
: Observing people/animals in different environments.
Observe a large group
Behavior may change
if they know they are
being watched,
ethical issues may
be raised if they
do not they are being
Descriptive Methods

: Low Cost, Quick, Large groups

: People may lie
Correlational Methods
A measure of the direction & strength of the relationship between 2 factors (variables).
Factor that has value and can vary
ex. height/weight
Positive Correlation
Occurs when the factors increase together.
(Hours studying)
Negative Correlation
Occurs when one factors decreases as the
other increases
(Hours watching tv)
No Correlation
Occurs when neither factor influences the
(Apples Eaten)
Correlation is not Causation
Just because a relationship exist it
does not mean one causes the other.
1. The relationship may be cause by a 3rd variable.

2. Variables may influence each other simultaneously.
Experimental Methods
Allow psychologists to:
1. have more control over the situation (ex. variables).
2. make inferences about "cause".
Independent Variable (IV):
1. manipulated/controlled by researcher
2. "what is changed"
3. Assumed to have a direct effect on the DV.
4. "the cause"
**The IV causes the DV to change**
Violent Video Games & Violent Behavior
IV: The type of video game played.
DV: Child's behavior.
Cofounding Variables
1. Not considered in hypothesis but
influence results of experiment.
Control Group
: Is not exposed to the Independent Variable.

Experimental Group
: Is exposed to the Independent Variable.
Test Subjects/Participants
Random assignment
: Subjects are randomly assigned to the control group or experimental group. Each subject has the same chance.
Dependent Variable (DV):
1. measured/observed by researcher
2. "what is observed"
3. Assumed to be directly effected by the IV.
4. "the effect"
: Information Presented (Wording)

: People's account of incident
Specific Research Methods used in understanding development
Cross-sectional Research
: a research design (experiment) that compares groups of people who differ in age but similar in other important characteristics
1. Collect data once
2. Compare groups (Ex. 2 yo, 6 yo, 10 yo)
3. Any differences are result of age (presumed)
Longitudinal Research
: a research design (experiment) in which the same individuals are followed over time & their development is repeatedly assessed.
Cross-sequential Research
: a hybrid research design (experiment) in which researchers 1st study several groups of people of different ages (cross-sectional approach) & then follow those groups over time (longitudinal approach).
Researchers must uphold ethical standards
Code of ethics (set of moral principles) ensure ethics are not violated
Most educational/medical institutions have an Institutional Review Board (IRB)
Only permit research that is deemed ethical
Main Ethical Principles
Ensure participation is:
1. Voluntary
2. Confidential
3. Will not cause harm
Are the following statements a) falsifiable & b) testable?

1. Students who attend class get better grades than students who don't attend class.
2. All first-degree murderers should be executed.
3. Eating chocolate results in pimples.
4. You shouldn't cram for exams.
5. Crime levels are higher during a full moon.
6. Judy doesn't need to attend class because the lectures are all online.
7. The ability to multi-task declines with age.
8. I don't eat chocolate because it makes my face break out.
9. Boys in junior high should be required to take home economics.
10. Students who study have a higher GPA than students who don't study.
Ch. 1
The Science of Human Development
1. What ethical concerns, if any, were raised in this study?
2. Did the study yield any benefits? If so, do the benefits of this study outweigh the ethical concerns?
3. How could this study have been conducted in a more ethical manner?
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