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What Theories Do Developmental theory –Group of ideas, assumptions, and generalizations that interpret and illuminate the thousands of observations that.

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Presentation on theme: "What Theories Do Developmental theory –Group of ideas, assumptions, and generalizations that interpret and illuminate the thousands of observations that."— Presentation transcript:

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2 What Theories Do Developmental theory –Group of ideas, assumptions, and generalizations that interpret and illuminate the thousands of observations that have been made about human growth –Framework for understanding how and why people change as they grow older

3 What Theories Do Central questions for you to consider… 1.Do early experiences-of breast feeding or attachment or abuse- linger into adulthood, even if they seem to be forgotten? 2.Does learning depend on specific encouragement, punishment, and role models? 3. Do children develop moral principles, even if they are not taught right from wrong? 4. Does culture guide behavior? 5. Is survival a basic instinct, underlying all personal or social decisions?

4 What Theories Do Theories produce hypotheses. Theories generate discoveries. Theories offer practical guidance.

5 What Theories Do Facts and norms Norm: An average, or standard measurement, calculated from the measurements of many individuals within a specific group or population. Theories are not facts—but they allow us to question norms, suggest hypotheses, and provide guidance. Backpacks or Bouquets? Children worldwide are nervous on the first day of school, but their coping reflects implicit cultural theories. Kindergarten girls in Kentucky bring many supplies, while elementary children in Russia bring flowers for their teachers. Backpacks or Bouquets? Children worldwide are nervous on the first day of school, but their coping reflects implicit cultural theories. Kindergarten girls in Kentucky bring many supplies, while elementary children in Russia bring flowers for their teachers.

6 Grand Theories Theories –Psychoanalytic –Behavioral –Cognitive Characteristics –Comprehensive –Enduring –Widely applied

7 Grand Theories Psychoanalytic Theory –Proposes that irrational, unconscious drives and motives, often originating in childhood, underlie human behavior Freud (1856–1939) –Proposes five psychosexual stages during which sensual satisfaction is linked to developmental needs and conflicts. –Suggests early conflict resolution determines personality patterns –Personality has three parts: id, ego, and superego Freud at Work In addition to being the world’s first psychoanalyst, Sigmund Freud was a prolific writer. Freud at Work In addition to being the world’s first psychoanalyst, Sigmund Freud was a prolific writer.

8 Odd or Common? Freud The oddity here is not the biting toddler, but the old leather suitcase, or perhaps Freud’s interpretation of the oral stage. Everyone who knows babies expects them to mouth whatever they can. Can you explain this behavior using Freudian theory?

9 Grand Theories If Erikson had published his theory at age 73 (when this photograph was taken) instead of in his 40s, would he still have described his life as a series of crises? Psychoanalytic theory Epigenetic Theory –Stresses that genes and biological impulses are powerfully influenced by the social environment Erik Erikson (1902–1994) –Described eight developmental stages, each characterized by a challenging developmental crisis –Proposed five psychosocial stages built on Freud's theory, but added three adult stages

10 Grand Theories These adolescents think they are nonconformists, and their short skirts, opaque tights, and hairstyles are certainly unlike those of their mothers or grandmothers. But they are similar to adolescents everywhere during each particular historical period—seeking to establish their own distinct identity. Pink or Purple Hair

11 Comparison of Freud’s Psychosexual and Erikson’s Psychosocial Stages

12 Grand Theory Three types of learning Behaviorism is called learning theory because it emphasizes the learning process.

13 Grand Theories Behaviorism Conditioning –Proposes that learning takes place through processes by which responses become linked to particular stimuli Learning theory –Focuses on observable behavior –Describes the laws and processes by which behavior is learned

14 Grand Theories Behaviorism –Argued that scientists should examine only what they could observe and measure –Proposed anything can be learned with focus on behavior –No specific stages proposed John Watson ( ) –American psychologist –One of earliest proponents of behaviorism and learning theory

15 Grand Theories Behaviorism Classical conditioning –Demonstrates that behaviors can be learned by making an association between an environmental stimulus and a naturally occurring stimulus –Also called respondent conditioning Pavlov ( ) –Received the Nobel Prize in 1904 for his digestive processes research. –Resulted in discovery of classical conditioning

16 Grand Theories Behaviorism Operant conditioning –Proposes that reinforcement or punishment may be used to either increase or decrease the probability that a behavior will occur again in the future –Also called instrumental conditioning Skinner ( ) –Agreed with Watson that psychology should focus on the scientific study of behavior –Was best known for experiments with rats, pigeons, and his own daughter

17 Rats, Pigeons, and People B. F. Skinner designed a glass-enclosed crib in which temperature, humidity, and perceptual stimulation could be controlled to make her time in the crib enjoyable and educational.

18 Grand Theories Three Types of Learning: Behaviorism is also called learning theory because it emphasizes the learning process, as shown here.

19 Grand Theories Cognitive theory Proposes thoughts and expectations profoundly affect actions, attitudes, beliefs and assumptions Focuses on changes in how people think over time Jean Piaget (1896–1980) Maintained that cognitive development occurs in four major age-related periods, or stages Intellectual advancement occurs lifelong because humans seek cognitive equilibrium Would You Talk to This Man? Children loved talking to Jean Piaget, and he learned by listening carefully—especially to their incorrect explanations, which no one had paid much attention to before.

20 How to Think About Flowers A person’s stage of cognitive growth influences how he or she thinks about everything, including flowers. Can you identify the Piagetian stage at which each person is thinking about flowers?

21 Piaget Cognitive theory Assimilation –Experiences are interpreted to fit into, or assimilate with, old ideas. Accommodation –Old ideas are restructured to include, or accommodate, new experiences.

22 Cognitive Theory Cognitive Equilibrium State of mental balance, no confusion –New ideas through past ideas interpreted –Needed for intellectual advancement Easy equilibrium not always possible –If new experience is not understandable, cognitive disequilibrium can occur.

23 Piaget’s Periods of Cognitive Development

24 Grand Theories Information processing theory –Representative newer version of cognitive theory –Compares human thinking processes, by analogy, to computer analysis of data, including sensory input, connections, stored memories, and output

25 We Try Harder Details of brain scans require interpretation from neurologists, but even the novice can see that adults who have been diagnosed with ADHD (second line of images) reacted differently in this experiment when they were required to push a button only if certain letters appeared on a screen.

26 Comparing Grand Theories Criticism –Many psychologists reject psychoanalytic theory as unscientific. –Others reject behaviorism as demeaning of human potential Contribution –Both behaviorism and psychoanalytic theory have led to hypotheses that have been examined in thousands of experiments

27 Toilet Training--How and When? Research findings Behaviorist approach was best for older children with serious disabilities Almost no method seemed to result in marked negative emotional consequences Many sources explain that because each child is different, there is no “right” way. What is the goal?

28 Newer Theories New theories Are multicultural Are multidisciplinary Are most closely tied to current view of science of human development Include sociocultural theory and universal theory

29 Newer Theories Sociocultural theory Proposes thoughts and human development results from the dynamic interaction between developing persons and their surrounding society Focuses on culture as integral to a person’s development Lev Vygotsky ( ) Describes interaction between culture and education Developed concepts of apprenticeship in thinking and guided participation

30 Newer Theories Zone of proximal development –Skills, knowledge, and concepts that learner is close to acquiring but cannot master without help Process of joint construction –New knowledge obtained through mentoring The intellectual excitement of that zone is the origin of the joy that both instruction and study can bring.

31 Taking culture into account Sociocultural perspective –Is viewed not as something external that impinges on developing persons but as integral to their development every day via the social –Influences inclusion of culture into contemporary research –Sheds new light on cultural differences in many areas, including attachment, gender, and ethnic prejudice

32 Universal Perspective Humanism –Stresses the potential of all human beings for good and the belief that all people have the same basic needs, regardless of culture, gender Abraham Maslow (1908– 1970) –One of the founders of humanism –Arranged shared human needs in hierarchy –Contended that everyone must satisfy each lower level before moving higher Hope and Laughter Maslow believed in the human spirit and that it could overcome oppression and reach self- actualization, where faith, hope, and humor abound. Hope and Laughter Maslow believed in the human spirit and that it could overcome oppression and reach self- actualization, where faith, hope, and humor abound.

33 Moving Up, Not Looking Back

34 Universal Perspective Evolutionary theory –Integrates explanations for many issues in human development –Suggests humans have two long-standing biologically based drives: survival and reproduction –Proposes concept of selective adaptation –Suggests genetic variations are particularly beneficial when the environment changes and benefits humanity as a whole

35 Selective Adaptation Illustrated As you see, in 100 years, the “odd” gene becomes more common than the normal one—a new normal

36 What Theories Contribute Psychoanalytic theories Behaviorism Cognitive theories Sociocultural theories Universal theories Can you identify the contributions of each of the above theories?

37 Five Perspectives on Human Development

38 What Theories Contribute Eclectic perspective –Taken by most developmentalists –Occurs when aspects of each of the various theories of development are selectively applied, rather than adhering exclusively to one theory –Helps guard against bias and facilitates open- mindedness to alternative explanations for complexity of human life


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