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Flashcards in chapter 9 Deck (15):

Infancy - 0-2 years

physical development - rapid brain and body growth, improvement in voluntary muscle control ie walking

cognitive development - improvement in perceptual ability, understanding and beginning to communicate, increase in memory

social/emotional development - self recognition and self identity, beginning to understand gender identity, enjoyment of family centred social interactions and basic pretend play


childhood - preschool children

physical development - continued rapid brain development, hand preference established

cognitive development - large increase in use and understanding of language, thoughts generally guided by perception rather than logic

social/emotional development - rapid acquisition of gender roles, more sophisticated pretend play


childhood - school-aged children

physical development - physical growth slows, motor skills continue to develop

cognitive development - attention span improves, more logical thinking, improved memory strategies and problem solving abilities

social/emotional development - more independent from parents and carers


adolescence - 12-20 years

physical development - dramatic growth spurt, sexual maturity and brain development, especially the prefrontal cortex

cognitive development - sophisticated and logical thinking skills, gains in knowledge and understanding

social/emotional development - a quest for independence, more sophisticated ideas of self, emotionally closer friendships


early adulthood - 20-40 years

physical development - peak physical functioning

cognitive development - sophisticated cognitive skills, particularly in areas of expertise

social/emotional development - continued work on self identity, intimacy and independence are important, adjustment ti new roles such as marriage, parenthood and work


middle age - 40-65 years

physical development - physical declines become noticeable

cognitive development - more stable cognitive functioning, peak expertise and creative experiences

social/emotional development - more stable self identity although possible mid life crisis, career and family life more stable


old age - 65+ years

physical development - continued physical decline

cognitive development - for many, some cognitive decline

social/emotional development - self esteem and life satisfaction is generally very good, close ties to family and friends and involvement in social activities continue



-is a genetically programmed process that governs growth
-it directs physical and biological development, including the development of an infants muscles and brain
-maturation and learning work together


inbron reflexes

-babies are born with a set of these reflexes which are automatic responses to a specific stimuli
-are not learned behaviours, not a product of the environment
-is entirely due to nature (hereditary) as genetic material programs them to occur in newborn babies


developmental norms

-indicate the average age a certain behaviour or skill will be achieved
-based on the mean age of a large sample
-provide feedback as to whether the infant is progressing normally in relation to the rest of the population


critical period

-are times of special sensitivity to certain environmental factors that can shape the individuals capacity for future development
- in some animals a critical period is a time in a particular species lifespan in which the animal is pre-programmed to learn something
-they tend to begin and end abruptly and beyond this period the phenomenon will not appear
-in humans there are only a few critical periods after birth
-ie the development of vision, human babies must be exposed to light in the first few days of life so sensory neutrons in the retina develop


sensitive period

-best or optimal times for psychological development in certain areas
-they are seen to begin and end more gradually than critical periods
they concede with times when our brains nervous system is undergoing rapid growth
-ie learning to speak in the first years of life



-are toxic substances capable of harming an unborn chid
-will affect an unborn child's development in it os exposed to them at specific times in their development
-these effects can be tragic and have life long consequences, ie rubella and other related birth defects


experience-expectant learning

-are situation in which a species' typical experience plays a necessary role in the developmental organisation of the nervous system
-normal brain growth relies on these fries if environmental exposure
-ie visual cortex expects exposure ti night and patterned visual info and is genetically programmed to use these inputs for normal development
-deprivation of these essential forms of environmental inout can have permanent effects


experience-dependent learning

-a form of learning that can occur at any time during an individuals life
-refers to adaptiv plasticity, encoding new experiences that occur throughout life, fostering new brain growth and refining existing brain structures
-these vary for every individual according to their unique set of experiences throughout life
-ie learning to read and write in one's native tongue
-is and individual misses out on the appropriate experience-dependent learning opportunities during a sensitive period, it does not necessarily mean that learning will never occur