Dating

Dating works to meet the needs of both identity achievement and the development of intimacy (both of which are chief tasks of adolescence), in that as one gradually becomes closer to another, one becomes more self-aware. In coming to know the self, adolescents begin to move away from the known world of family relationships and toward the world of peers. In doing so, adolescents become aware of differences between self and others as they work to develop a system of personal values and beliefs,...

The Contextualist Worldview

Although there are many differences between a mechanistic and an organismic worldview, they nevertheless share one important characteristic they each view the process of development as universal. This emphasis on universality is one of the ways in which these two worldviews can be contrasted to the third, Contextualism. Contextualists do not believe that there are universal laws of development rather, they argue that the forces that contribute to development are specific to historical time and...

Inclusion of Preschoolers with Special Needs

In the 1980s and 1990s, there was an ever-increasing emphasis on educating children with special needs (e.g., learning disabilities) alongside typically developing peers in the ''regular'' classroom rather than in separate, ''special'' classes that enroll only children with disabilities. Although mandated by federal laws and regulations, this move toward inclusion has been controversial. Nevertheless, there has been considerable research documenting the potential benefits of inclusion at all...

Scholastic Aptitude Test

The Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) is a standardized college admission test, consisting of a verbal portion and a mathematics portion, that was developed by the Educational Testing Service of Princeton, New Jersey. Verbal reasoning is examined by the test taker's ability to correctly analyze and complete analogies, sentence completion problems, and reading comprehension passages. Mathematical reasoning is tested through the completion of multiple-choice items covering areas such as algebra and...

Bronfenbrenner Urie 1917

Urie Bronfenbrenner was born in 1917 in Moscow. At the age of six he arrived in the United States with his family. His father, a physician and neuropathologist, worked at a state institution in New York. He can recall his father's concern with the overreliance on a single IQ testing to place children in institutions for the mentally retarded. Russian immigrant psychologists also visited his home and discussed outstanding psychologists, such as Kurt Lewin and Lev Vygotsky. In 1934 he won a...

Mcgraw Myrtle Byram 18991988

Born in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1899, Myrtle McGraw was a pioneer in the study of child growth and development in the 1930s and 1940s. She is best known for her experimental study of twins Johnny and Jimmy Woods. Her studies demonstrated that early stimulation accelerates motor development, enabling infants to learn challenging skills, such as swimming and roller skating, and to solve problems that require judgment and deliberation. She also disputed Yale psychologist Arnold Gesell's maturation...

Possible Negative Effects of Computer

One of the most compelling arguments made against the use of computers by children is the risk of repetitive motion injury such as carpal tunnel syndrome. This problem may be greater for children than for adults because their musculature and skeletal systems are not fully formed and may be at greater risk for injury. Children's risk of suffering repetitive motion injuries may be further increased because they tend to use computers that are sized for adults, placed on adult-sized furniture, and...

The Role of Biological Factors

Some theorists argue that the foundations of aggression are biological. Biological factors that influence aggressive behavior include hormones, physiological illness, and temperament. Hormones play some indirect role in human aggression. Interaction with external stimuli may affect the threshold of aggressive behavior. Some researchers have concluded that high testosterone levels could be a result of aggressive behavior. In women, premenstrual tension syndrome is associated with a number of...

Who Wrote This Encyclopedia

The topics in this encyclopedia were selected and organized by Neil J. Salkind and Lewis Margolis (editor and associate editor, respectively), with the help of Mandy Goodnight. Neil J. Salkind is a professor of Psychology and Research in Education at the University of Kansas, while Lewis Margolis is a professor of Public Health at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Mandy Goodnight is a practicing school psychologist in western Kansas. All of the entries were written by leading...

Steady versus Multiple Dating

Dating relationships range from informal casual dating to involved, steady relationships. Steady dating is more common among older adolescents, with 30 percent of males and 40 percent of females between the ages of sixteen and eighteen indicating that they are going steady. Many argue it is not advisable to allow adolescents younger than fifteen to date intensively, as it appears to have a negative effect on interpersonal development dating may limit their interactions with others and lead to...

Klinefelter Syndrome

Klinefelter's syndrome (genotype 47, XXY) is a chromosomal anomaly in which affected males have an extra X chromosome. It occurs in 1 1,000 to 1 2,000 newborn males and has been detected in .003 percent of spontaneous abortions. This condition generally arises from failure of chromosomes to separate properly during meiosis. Specifically, an egg cell bearing an additional X chromosome (or a sperm bearing both an X and a Y chromosome) unites with a normal sex cell. Approximately one-third of...

Fragile X Syndrome

Fragile X syndrome is an inherited disorder caused by a trinucleotide repeat expansion of DNA on the X chromosome. This expansion results in the absence or severe deficiency of the FMR1 protein (FMRP), which is known to be essential for normal brain function. FMRP appears to have an RNA-binding activity and may play an important role in synaptic maturation. Approximately 1 per 4,000 males and 1 per 6,000 females are affected. Males with Fragile X syndrome typically have moderate to severe...

Physical Growth

Physical growth usually refers to changes in size or mass so it is correct to say that a child grows in stature (height) or body weight. Even though most people usually think of growth at the level of the whole child, the cells and internal structures that make up the child also grow, primarily by increasing in number or size. Consequently, auxologists (those who study child growth) may be interested in the growth of bones to help understand fractures and osteoporosis the growth of the heart...

Public Policy and Teenage Pregnancy

Just as there is a lack of consensus about the consequences of teenage pregnancy, the optimal focus for public policy and intervention is also in dispute. Some experts reason that because the disadvantaged circumstances in which many women grow up are a predominant factor impacting teen birth rates, policies and programs would be most effectively directed at ameliorating that disadvantage and developing positive life options for young women. Others, however, maintain that in the absence of...

Warning Signs of Suicide

Most people who are suicidal put out warning signs to the public as a cry for help. They either directly or indirectly tell or show others about their suicide plan. Direct verbal threats such as ''I am going to kill myself,'' ''I am going to swallow a bottle of aspirin,'' or ''By the weekend I will be dead'' leave nothing to the imagination. These statements should be taken seriously, no matter how overdramatic they may sound, because very few people make such serious statements for the sake of...

Binet Alfred 18571911

Alfred Binet's most significant contribution to the field of child psychology was the development of the first intelligence test. Binet was born in Nice, France, in 1857. He received a law degree in 1878 but became interested in the field of psychology in 1880. Binet did not receive any formal graduate training in psychology. His first appointment was in a French laboratory, the Salep-triere, conducting research on hypnosis under the supervision of Jean Charcot. In 1890 Binet rejected Charcot's...

Mixed Empirical Findings

Numerous studies have been conducted since the 1970s investigating unsupervised children from psychological, sociological, and educational perspectives. The findings have been quite mixed, with some researchers finding clear differences between supervised and self-care children and some failing to do so. Among the former, Ruth C. Reynolds found that un-supervised children were at greater risk than supervised children for negative feeling, insecurity, accidents, abuse, neglect, and fear. Thomas...

Types of Day Care and Demographic Information

Census Bureau, in 1995, 75 percent of the 19.3 million children under age five were in some form of regular day-care arrangement. Multiple care arrangements were common 44 percent regularly spent time in more than one arrangement per week (the average was two). Many types of day care were used. Whereas 50 percent of these children were cared for by relatives (such as a grandparent at 30 or the other parent at 18 ), 49 percent were cared for by nonrelatives. Some children...

Bibliography

Bandura, Albert. ''Human Agency in Social Cognitive Theory.'' American Psychologist 44 (1989) 1175-1184. Bandura, Albert, and S. A. Ross. ''Transmission of Aggression through Imitation of Aggressive Models.'' Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology 63 (1961) 575-582. Burman, Erica. Deconstructing Developmental Psychology. London Routledge, 1994. Burman, Erica. Continuities and Discontinuities in Interpretive and Textual Approaches in Developmental Psychology. Human Development 39 (1996)...

Classical or Respondent Conditioning

In the early twentieth century, Ivan Pavlov, a Russian scientist, unwittingly stumbled upon an important discovery for the field of behavioral psychology. While studying digestion in dogs, he discovered that after being fed a few times, the animals would salivate before actually receiving food. The dogs were associating external cues such as the sound of the food cabinet being opened with being fed, so they would salivate upon hearing these sounds before they saw the food. This phenomenon is...

Artificial Insemination

Artificial insemination is a procedure in which sperm obtained by masturbation or other methods of mechanical stimulation are deposited in the vagina, cervix, or uterus of the female by means other than natural intercourse, with the specific intent to achieve pregnancy. Artificial insemination is a brief office procedure that may be performed using the fresh sperm of the male partner or the frozen thawed sperm of an anonymous sperm donor, and involves injection of the sperm into the female...

Psychological and Social Service Issues in Adoption

A number of psychological and social service issues in adoption have arisen since the 1970s. Some of the more important issues include (1) the psychological risk associated with adoption, (2) special needs adoption, (3) transracial adoption, and (4) openness in adoption. Historically, adoption has been viewed as a highly successful societal practice for children whose biological parents could not or would not care for them. Evidence of the benefits of adoption is obvious when comparing the more...

Hall Granville Stanley 18441924

Granville Stanley Hall, the first president of the American Psychological Association, was born in Ash-field, Massachusetts. Hall was enrolled in Williston Seminary, and then went to Williams College, where he graduated in 1867. Around 1870 Hall traveled to Germany, where he was influenced by Nature-philosophy, especially by its genetic (i.e., developmental) approach. After obtaining his doctorate at Harvard University under the supervision of William James in 1878, he visited Germany again to...

The Prevalence of Single Parent Families in America

It has been predicted that half of all American children born in the 1990s will spend some part of their childhood in single-parent homes. Figures available from the U.S. Bureau of the Census (which yielded all of the statistics presented here) indicate that the percent of American homes that were single parent in composition increased dramatically from 1970 (when 18.5 of homes were single parent) to 1999 (27.7 ). Such increases are accounted for by rising divorce rates (5.7 of first-time...

Principles of Development

The process of motor development depends heavily on the maturation of the central nervous system and the muscular system. As these systems develop, an infant's ability to move progresses. The sequence of motor development follows an apparently orderly pattern. Arnold Gesell, a noted researcher in the field of child development, indicated through his studies that development does not proceed in a straight line. Instead, it swings back and forth between periods of rapid and slower maturation....

Sources of Strength and Buffers of Race Related Stressors

Religion has been theorized to be an adaptive coping mechanism that has enabled African Americans to transcend the limitations and harshness of their social realities and to give meaning and direction to their individual and collective existence. During the 1980s, nearly 70 percent of African Americans reported themselves to be members of a church. Churches provide informal support (e.g., friendship, companionship, advice and comfort, help during illness, financial assistance), formal services...

Dreaming

Children's dreams have often been described as bizarre and fantastical in nature. Early theories of children's emotional development (e.g., psychoanalytic theory, which maintained that dreams are wish fulfillments) contributed to this view. But how dreams are studied may also play a role. Dreams reported after they occur may have been recalled because they were bizarre. David Foulkes showed in laboratory studies that if children were awakened during REM sleep and asked to describe their dreams,...

Harlow Harry 19051981

Harry Harlow received his B.A. and Ph.D. in psychology from Stanford University and then joined the faculty at the University of Wisconsin, where he established the Psychology Primate Laboratory. When Harlow's lab joined the Wisconsin Regional Primate Laboratory in 1964, Harlow became the director of the merged research center. He is most famous for his scientific study of love. Starting in 1957, Harlow systematically manipulated the rearing conditions of baby rhesus monkeys. Some were reared...

Inductive Reasoning

Inductive reasoning is logical thinking that operates from specific cases to general principles. For example, a preschooler might conclude that dolphins are fish because they live in water and swim as fish do. As children develop more sophisticated thinking, they are able to employ deductive reasoning, in which they use general principles to form hypotheses. Adolescents, for example, might have heard that dolphins are mammals. They could test this hypothesis by identifying the definition of...

Longitudinal versus Cross Sectional Studies

By the very nature of their field of study, child development researchers are concerned with change that occurs over time. This fact brings to light another research design choice that must be considered longitudinal research versus cross-sectional research. Longitudinal studies involve studying the same group of participants over a particular time period. Cross-sectional studies involved studying groups of participants in different age groups at the same point in time. It would seem that...

How Mediation Affects Parents and Children

The negative psychological effects of divorce on parents and children may be directly or indirectly a function of the adversarial approach, which often maintains and even fuels hostility between divorcing parents. Mediation should provide psychological benefits for both parents and children, such as decreasing bitterness and tension and increasing communication between the parents. The research findings are not completely clear, however. While some studies indicate that couples in mediation...

Summary

Beginning in infancy and spanning the course of childhood and adolescence, emotionality represents a critical aspect of development. Although the precise factors that affect emotional development vary from individual to individual, emotions influence how children relate to others, how they feel about themselves, and the direction in which development proceeds. The study of emotional development in children and adolescents is incomplete, however. Researchers are only beginning to better...

The Right Amount of Exercise

In normally active children, exercise-related injuries and problems are few and far between. Physical education teachers, coaches, and doctors can typically provide the supervision necessary to prevent harm from occurring. Teachers and coaches are educated specifically about exercise in children. Professionals who work closely with children can help each child determine his or her own limits. The primary risk associated with exercise is overuse injuries such as muscle strains, tendonitis,...

Sign Languages

In the mid-1700s, Charles-Michel de l'Epee, a French cleric, observed that twin girls who had grown up together used fluent gestures to communicate with each other, and it occurred to him that this gestural language might already be equipped with syntax. He proposed to extend the native sign language of the deaf with supplementary methodical signs until this sign language became the intellectual equivalent of any spoken language. Today there are many sign languages based on hand signs and they...

Effects of Day Care

The effect of day care on children's development is related to the quality of the care the children receive. The Cost, Quality, and Outcomes Study of Child Care (CQO) investigated this issue and identified three levels of quality low, mediocre, and high. Table 1 provides characteristics of each level. Higher quality was related to higher caregiver wages, higher caregiver education and training, and lower adult to child ratios. This study examined the prevalence of each quality level. For...

Assessment of Gross Motor and Fine Motor Development

Many assessment tools exist to measure a child's performance in regard to gross and fine motor skills. Each assessment requires good observational skills from the evaluator, who is typically a developmental pediatrician, nurse, educator, occupational therapist, or physical therapist. Some assessments call for each item to be administered in a formal standardized manner, so that each child is tested the same way every time. These tests are also called normative-based because they compare...

Parallel Play

Parallel play (or parallel activity) is a term that was introduced by Mildred Parten in 1932 to refer to a developmental stage of social activity in which children play with toys like those the children around them are using but are absorbed in their own activity and usually play beside rather than with one another. Children in this stage may comment on what they are doing or imitate what another child does, but they rarely cooperate in a task or engage in dramatic play or formal games with...

Complications

Most complications can usually be dealt with successfully by the obstetrician and the hospital staff. The baby may, for example, come out bottom first in what is called a breech presentation. Sometimes one foot is first to appear, and sometimes the umbilical cord comes out alongside the head. The doctor must manage these variations and often actually turn the baby before birth with great skill to avoid any further complications. Babies, for the most part, deliver themselves. It is when...

Single Fathers Compared to Single Mothers

The overwhelming majority of single-parent families are headed by mothers (84 of all single-parent families in 1998), rather than fathers (16 ). Still, the Children in single-parent homes do well when they experience parenting that is adequate in terms of warmth, control, and monitoring. (Hurewitz Creative Corbis) Children in single-parent homes do well when they experience parenting that is adequate in terms of warmth, control, and monitoring. (Hurewitz Creative Corbis) number of single...

The Form of Infants Pre Speech Vocalizations

Pre-speech vocalizations are divided into reflexive vocalizations (e.g., cries, coughs, hiccups), which are related to the baby's physical state, and nonreflexive vocalizations (e.g., cooing, playful productions, yelling), which contain phonetic and syllabic features of speech. Both vowels and consonants appear in nonreflexive vocalizations, and the most prevalent syllable structure is a consonant followed by a vowel (CV e.g., ba , du , ke ). The overall composition of pre-speech vocalizations...

Cattell James 18601944

Born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, in 1860, J. McK-een Cattell was the fourth president of the American Psychological Association (1896) and the first psychologist elected as a member of the National Academy of Sciences in 1901. He was the founder of the related areas of differential psychology and psycho-metrics. Cattell was the son of the president of Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania. As a young man he was educated at home, and then in the college classroom by the faculty members of...

Reflectivity and Impulsivity

Reflectivity and impulsivity are polar ends of a spectrum in a third and very substantial cognitive style. Studies in this domain began in the early 1960s with several researchers, such as Jerome Kagan. One of the methods for testing this cognitive style involves administration of the Matching Familiar Figures Test, which requires subjects to view a picture of an object and then attempt to match the object when presented with the same object in a group of similar objects. The test is then...

Three Common Elements of Temperament Characteristics

The first factor common to all temperament characteristics is that these individual differences are present at birth. Sigmund Freud was the first psychologist to discuss personality development. The purpose of his theory, however, was to explain the common human experience. Freud argued that all children were born with biological drives (e.g., hunger, thirst) that need to be satisfied in order to ensure personal survival. Three mental structures (the id, the ego, and the superego) emerge during...

Childrens and Adolescents Adjustment in Stepfamilies

Children and adolescents in stepfamilies tend to develop more problems than children and adolescents in intact families. Children in stepfamilies are more likely than children in intact families to have academic problems, to have externalizing or internalizing disorders, to be less socially competent, and to have problems with parents, siblings, and peers. About a third of adolescents become disengaged from their stepfamilies and consequently may be more like ly to become sexually active at an...

Learning Disability Subtypes

There are many different subtypes of learning disabilities. Byron Rourke, writing in 1993, reported three major groupings (1) reading spelling, (2) arithmetic, and (3) reading spelling arithmetic. Larry Silver, also writing in 1993, suggested a model that includes input disabilities (visual perceptual, auditory perceptual, and sensory integrative), integrative disabilities (sequencing, abstraction, and organization), memory disabilities, and output disabilities (language and motor). Reading...

Ainsworth Mary Dinsmore Salter 19131999

Mary Dinsmore Salter was born on December 1, 1913, in Glendale, Ohio, the oldest daughter of Charles and Mary Salter. Charles, a successful businessman, moved his family to Toronto at the end of World War I. Their daughter Mary was a gifted child who learned to read at the age of three, and was very attached to her father. During her undergraduate years at the University of Toronto, William Blatz, who had developed ''security theory,'' sparked Salter's interest in psychology. According to this...

What Affects Childrens and Adolescents Adjustment to Stepfamilies

Step Familys

Several factors may affect how well a child adjusts to a stepfamily. First, the child's gender is a factor. Girls have more difficulty than boys adjusting to step-family life. In stepfamilies that include the child's biological mother and a stepfather, girls are more likely than boys to be resistant to the stepfather. In single-parent divorced families, mother-daughter relationships often are exceptionally close consequently, when mothers remarry, girls may view new stepfathers as threats to...

The Well Being of Children Raised in Single Parent Homes

When compared to their peers from traditional two-parent homes, children raised in single-parent homes are at risk for a number of less desirable outcomes. Such outcomes include both lower academic performance and a higher incidence of behavioral problems. It would be a mistake to conclude, however, that such negative outcomes were the direct consequence of the number of parents in the home or, as has been suggested on occasion, the absence of a father figure in a child's life. Instead,...

Gay And Lesbianheaded Families

Openly gay and lesbian people are choosing to have children in increasing numbers, although the largest group of lesbian- and gay-headed families is still comprised of those parenting children from prior heterosexual relationships. Methods for creating ''intentional'' families include adoption, foster parenting, alternative insemination, and surrogacy. Laws regarding adoption and foster parenting vary by state as well as by country (in the case of international adoption). The exact number of...

Identity Development

The process of developing an identity begins with the infant's discovery of self, continues throughout childhood, and becomes the focus of adolescence. Erik Erikson, a pioneer in the field of personality development, identified the goal of adolescence as achieving a coherent identity and avoiding identity confusion. Identity is multidimensional and may include physical and sexual identity, occupational goals, religious beliefs, and ethnic background. Adolescents explore these dimensions, and...

Childhood and Early Adolescence An Emphasis on Peers

Children spend much of their time with similar-age peers. Meaningful interactions between peers begin in infancy infants direct and respond to each other's smiles and vocalizations. As preschoolers age, their interactions with peers become increasingly complex, progressing from solitary play to onlooking (child watches others but does not join), parallel play (child plays beside but not with others), associative play (child plays with others), and cooperative play (child plays with others using...

Complications Related to Cesarean Delivery

Complications of the birth process may affect either the mother or the infant. Whereas the risk of complications for the mother is somewhat greater in a cesarean birth than in a vaginal birth, the risk of complications for the infant is greater from vaginal birth than from cesarean birth. Moreover, the type and severity of complications from each method of birth differs for both the mother and the infant. Complications of cesarean birth for the mother during the operative procedure include...

Stages of Psychosocial Development

Like those who have studied cognitive development, researchers in the field of psychosocial development have also developed stage theories to Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development Trust vs. Mistrust Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt Infants learn to trust that their needs will be met, or Children learn to do things and make choices for themselves, or they become doubtful of Children learn to define personal goals and seek to fulfill them, or they develop a sense of guilt over having such...

Biological Changes Associated with Puberty

As a result of the activation of the hormones controlling pubertal development, early adolescents undergo a growth spurt, develop primary and secondary sex characteristics, become fertile, and experience increased sexual drive. There is also some evidence that the hormonal changes are linked to behaviors such as aggression, sexuality, and mood swings. These relations are quite weak, however, and are often overridden by social experiences. In general, pubertal changes begin twelve to eighteen...

How Are Children Affected by Television

Television may influence children's development in a variety of ways. Two broad areas for consideration are effects on children's cognitive development and academic achievement and effects on children's social development and relationships with others. Parents and teachers have long voiced concerns regarding television's potential effects on children's thinking and school achievement. A basis for these concerns is displacement theory, which proposes that time spent with television takes time...

Stranger Anxiety

Stranger anxiety is discomfort at the approach of an unfamiliar person. Babies differ greatly in how they show it some cry vigorously, cling and hide their faces, or merely become subdued and wary. Because of differences among researchers with regard to behaviors used as evidence of stranger anxiety, there is disagreement about when it first occurs. Clearly, however, by the time they are one year old, most babies react with some degree of stranger anxiety. These reactions show that they can...

Piagets Theory of Cognitive Development

Piaget is considered the father of cognitive development because his studies were the first to examine children's thinking and because he offered a comprehensive theory of how cognition changed over time. His theory of cognitive development was based on data from a series of experiments and interviews of children (including his own) that explored their thinking in a variety of contexts. Piaget's theory consisted of four stages of development from birth to adolescence sensorimotor,...

Imaginary Playmates

Imaginary playmates have fascinated psychologists, parents, and teachers for many years. Although psychologists have been writing about imaginary playmates since the late 1800s, only a handful of articles and book chapters exist on this topic, with only a few of those empirically based. Some experts think that children with imaginary playmates are likely to be between the ages of three and six, be of at least average intelligence, possess good verbal skills, be characterized as creative and...

List Of Articles

Garfinkle African-American Children Vonnie C. McLoyd Algea O. Harrison-Hale American Sign Language Donna J. Crowley Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Babbling and Early Words Esther Dromi Birth Defects Anita Farel Robert Meyer Maggie Hicken Birth Order and Spacing James A. Troha Martha Slay Greg R. Alexander Mary Ann Pass Brain Development Mark H. Johnson Michelle de Haan Bronfenbrenner, Urie Thomas J. Russo Child Custody and Support Cornelia Brentano...

Respiratory Distress Syndrome

Respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) is a disorder of lung function frequently affecting premature infants. Infants born at less than thirty-two weeks gestation are at the highest risk. RDS is caused by the inability of immature lungs to produce sufficient amounts of the chemical surfactant. Without surfactant, the small air sacks of the lungs collapse, resulting in poor exchange of oxygen and respiratory distress. RDS may be severe enough to cause respiratory failure and the need for support...

Observational Learning

Learning does not always occur directly as a result of punishment or reinforcement, but can occur through the process of watching others. Children can learn from observing rewards or punishments given to someone else, and do not need to be the recipients themselves. This form of social learning is called observational learning. The terms ''imitation'' and ''modeling'' are often used interchangeably and are types of observational learning. Imitation may be a powerful means through which infants...

Social Changes Associated with Adolescence in Western Industrialized Countries

There are also major social changes associated with adolescence. Since these vary more across cultures than the biological and cognitive changes just discussed, the following social changes are common in Western industrialized countries. Probably the most controversial changes during adolescence are those linked to peer relationships. One major change in this arena is the general increase in peer focus and involvement in peer-related social sports, and other extracurricular activities. Many...

Quantitative Aspects of Parenting

A wealth of research findings indicate there is great variation within each type of family structure such as two-parent, divorced, remarried, cohabitat-ing, and single-parent such that family structure alone is a very poor indicator of quality of home environment or child outcomes. Children can have their emotional, social, cognitive, and physical needs met in the context of diverse family structures when parents have the personal and economic resources and the desire to provide a healthy...

Activity Level

Activity level refers to the relative amounts of motor behavior produced by children and includes everything from a toddler's first steps to a middle-school child's skillful soccer playing. Activity level is measured in a number of ways, ranging from parental observations to computer analysis. Regardless of how it is measured, activity level is usually related to other factors, such as gender, age, and individual differences. Boys are usually more active than girls, and rates of movement are...

Factors that Affect Parent Child Relationships

Parent-child relationships do not occur in a vacuum, and the context in which the relationships develop are likely to affect the nature of the relationships. Such factors as birth order, financial and emotional stress, social support, gender of the parent, infant temperament, and parent personality may influence qualities of the parent-child relationships and the impact of that relationship on the child's development. Marc Bornstein, in Handbook of Parenting, noted that mothers of first-borns...

The Development of Sex and Gender

Both sex and gender have a developmental story to tell that begins before birth (prenatal) and continues throughout the lifespan. Important developmental changes occur from conception through the adolescence years, and there are important theoretical perspectives and research studies that have tried to shed light on these developmental accomplishments. Gender-role development begins at conception. If the fertilized cell has an XY chromosomal pattern, the baby will become a genetic male an XX...

Mental Retardation

Mental retardation (MR) is a developmental disability, defined by looking at three aspects of a child. IQ score, adaptive functioning, and the age of onset determine where a child lies in the continuum of mental retardation. A numerical component of MR is defined by an IQ intelligence test. An IQ test measures and predicts how well individuals learn in their environment. The average IQ score of a typical developing child falls between 80 and 119. An IQ score below 70 to 75 characterizes a child...

Language Acquisition Device

The Language Acquisition Device (LAD) is a hypothetical brain mechanism that Noam Chomsky postulated to explain human acquisition of the syntactic structure of language. This mechanism endows children with the capacity to derive the syntactic structure and rules of their native language rapidly and accurately from the impoverished input provided by adult language users. The device is comprised of a finite set of dimensions along which languages vary, which are set at different levels for...

Hispanic Children

The term ''Hispanic'' incorporates a diverse group of people comprised of individuals from a variety of countries and representing great diversity in socio economic status, age, history, and ethnicity. According to U.S. Bureau of the Census estimates for the year 2000, about 12 percent of the total population in the United States was Hispanic. While Hispanic people share a common language, they still represent a heterogeneous group of adults, children, and families living in various cities...

Origins and Development

Origins of home schooling in the United States can be traced back to the seventeenth century prior to public education and compulsory attendance laws. Although some town schools existed, home schooling was often the only option available to colonial children and the early pioneers. Because of nationwide compulsory attendance laws and the beginning of public education in the early twentieth century, however, the need for home schooling significantly decreased. This decrease did not last long,...

Other Adolescent Sexuality Issues

Adolescent substance use increases the likelihood of risky adolescent sexual behavior, including multi ple sexual partners and early initiation of sexual intercourse. Among students who reported current sexual activity in the YRBS, 24.8 percent had used alcohol or drugs at last sexual intercourse. Male students (31.2 ) were more likely to have used such substances than females (18.5 ). In examining the data by race, both white male (33.7 ) and female students (21.5 ) were more likely than...

The Organismic Worldview

Those favoring an Organismic Worldview recognize both efficient and material causes as important but place even more emphasis on what they see as formal and final causes. Formal causes reflect the organizational quality of all living systems, while final causes reflect organicists' belief that human development is a directional process. To use an analogy, when hydrogen and oxygen are combined to form water, a substance is created with properties radically different than either of its two...

List Of Contributors

Abraham Virginia Tech Puberty Sex Education University of Waterloo Object Permanence Development, Brown University Heredity versus Environment Department of Maternal and Child Health, University of Alabama, Birmingham School of Public Health Birthweight Infant Mortality Premature Infants Medicine Children with Special Health Care Needs University of California, Irvine Stages of Development York University Acting Out Self-Concept Lynley H. Anderman University of Kentucky Self-Fulfilling...

Heredity Versus Environment

Many aspects of human characteristics such as height and eye color are largely genetically determined. Psychology researchers, however, tend to be interested in dimensions that are relatively less determined by genetics traits that subject more to environmental influences, such as how a person feels, acts, and thinks. Given that the degree of genetic determination appears to vary from one dimension to another e.g., spatial skills versus language acquisition , how can one determine the relative...

Developmental Perspectives of Child Maltreatment

It is very important to have an understanding of the relationship between child development and child maltreatment. Childhood is typically a time of rapid change and growth. Each stage of development brings new challenges and changes in the physical, cognitive, and behavioral makeup of a child. These changes are reflected in the epidemiology of maltreatment, which is the pattern of abuse and neglect that is commonly seen. Child development affects all of the following the precipitating factors...

Research and Good Fathering

Since the 1990s, a new body of research on fatherhood has emerged that goes beyond the simple dichotomy of presence versus absence to a deeper understanding of the multidimensional levels of parental involvement that make a difference in children's development. There is enough evidence to suggest that positive and nurturing parental involvement can make an important contribution to the healthy development of children. In addition to providing economic resources for their children, positively...

Historical View of Race

Historically, scientists defined race as being a biological entity. In the late 1700s and early 1800s, scientists' claims of hierarchies among the races were used to justify slavery and segregation in addition to social, political, and economic dominance over and oppression of blacks by whites. Race was defined by skin color, hair texture, and other physical features. Moreover, researchers believed that a person's race was related to intellectual, spiritual, and moral qualities that they...

Perspectives on Personality Development

Behavioral individuality in newborns is defined as temperament. A number of competing models of temperament have been proposed, but most generally view temperament as a construct that represents the early emerging, constitutionally based, behavioral individuality that is consistent over both time and situations. Conceptually, psychologists have differentiated infant temperament from childhood and adolescent personality by noting that temperament represents the more biologically based basic...