About This Chapter
Child Development in Psychology - Chapter Summary
Understanding how children gain a sense of self, personality, and cognition has long been of interest to psychologists. In this chapter, you'll learn about the different theories of child development, from Piaget's stages of cognitive development to Kohlberg's stages of moral development. You'll explore classic experiments involving monkeys and visual cliffs. Parents can have a great impact on cognitive development, and we'll discuss the ways in which this happens. This chapter ensures that you will be able to:
- Define developmental psychology, name historical theorists, and differentiate types of growth
- Understand how a fetus develops and what psychological developments happen inside the womb
- Describe the instincts and abilities of infants
- Discuss Harlowe's famous monkey experiment and it showed about the psychological need for love
- Understand Piaget's idea of adaptation, or how children learn about and categorize the world
- List the four stages of cognitive development in children as defined by Jean Piaget
- Discuss the importance of social interactions in cognitive development and the basics of Vygotsky's cultural-historical theory
- Understand the stages of development that Lawrence Kohlberg came up with to define how people make choices about right and wrong
- Explain how different ways parents act with their children can affect their development
- List Erik Erikson's eight stages of psychosocial development and the pairs of conflicting impulses that characterize each
- Understand gender differences and the roles genetics and environment play in the formation of gender schemas
- Give an overview of lifespan developmental psychology, including sexual development and behavior through the lifespan
- Discuss Carol Gilligan's Theory of moral development
Use the many tools at your disposal to engage with and process this information. A great place to begin is with the videos contained in the lessons. You can review or skip parts of the videos based on what you already know and what you still need to study. You'll find a handy timeline beneath the video to help you pinpoint key terms and/or theorists so you can go directly to where they're discussed in the video. Be sure to track your progress on your Dashboard.
1. Developmental Psychology: Definition, Theorists & Types of Growth
Why do we study psychological development? People change over their lifetimes, and developmental psychology helps us explore what changes and what stays the same. Learn about some of the big names in this field whose work and theories you'll explore in other lessons
2. Overview of Life Span Developmental Psychology
Developmental psychology studies the way people change and grow. In this lesson, we'll look at the principles of how people develop across the life span, including multidimensionality, multidirectionality, and plasticity.
3. Prenatal Development & Psychology: Stages & Abnormal Development
How is prenatal development related to psychology? How are minds forming in the womb still linked to the outside environment? This lesson explores the stages of prenatal development and a mother's ability to affect her unborn child.
4. Studying Infant Development in Psychology: Experiments, Instincts & Abilities
Watch babies brave heights at the insistence of their smiling mothers! You'll learn how instinct and attachment can help infants explore their environments through the visual cliff experiments.
5. Harlow's Monkeys: Experiment, Comfort & Socialization
What happens when you make a baby monkey choose between food and comfort? The Harlows answered this question in a series of primate experiments. Love is important, so how will these lonely monkeys function without it?
6. Assimilation & Accommodation in Psychology: Definition & Examples
How do assimilation and accommodation help a child adapt to his environment? You'll explore how established and changing patterns of information drive a child's intellectual growth as he learns about cats and dogs.
7. Piaget's Stages of Cognitive Development
How does a child's thinking change as she gets older? When does she learn about object permanence, conservation and abstract reasoning? You'll see that thought processes we take for granted as adults are actually important milestones in a child's cognitive development.
8. Lev Vygotsky's Theory of Cognitive Development
The role of culture and social interactions are imperative to cognitive development, according to psychologist, Lev Vygotsky. This lesson will discuss how social interactions play a role in cognitive development of children, provide an overview of Vygotsky's cultural-historical theory and describe the stages of speech and language development.
9. Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Development
How do people learn to make morally sound decisions? To illustrate Kohlberg's levels of moral development, we'll follow Lauren as she makes difficult decisions.
10. Carol Gilligan's Theory of Moral Development
How does one choose between right and wrong? Are there differences in moral development based on gender? Psychologist Carol Gilligan proposed a theory that highlights the differences between male and female moral development.
11. Life Situation Issues in Adolescence
Adolescence can be a difficult time, but some teens face life situations that can make it more difficult. Watch this lesson to find out how emancipation and part-time work affect adolescents' lives and the positives and negatives of each.
12. Parenting Styles: Authoritarian, Permissive & Neglectful
How do parenting styles differ from one another, and which are most effective? You'll follow expectant parents, Mary and Larry, as they walk their neighborhood and try to learn from other parents.
13. Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development: Theory & Examples
How do we form identities as we age and grow? To answer this question, Erik Erikson came up with eight stages of identity formation that revolve around conflict and resolution. Who are you, and who will you become after completing this lesson?
14. Gender Differences: The Nature Versus Nurture Debate
Are boys better in math and science courses than girls? Are girls better at activities like dance? Gender stereotypes are abundant in society. Are these stereotypes based on real differences or perpetuated opinions? This lesson focuses on gender differences and the influence of nature versus nurture.
15. Sexual Development & Behavior Through the Lifespan
Understanding sexual development and behavior throughout the lifespan can make a big difference in understanding human development overall. This lesson offers an overview of major developmental stages.
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Other chapters within the AP Psychology: Exam Prep course
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- AP Psychology: Personality Development and Theories
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