Developmental Psychology: Human Development

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Developmental psychology, which is also known as Human Development, is the study of progressive psychological changes that occur in human beings as they get older. Development is the series of age-related changes that happens over the course of a lifespan. People pass through different stages in a specific order and each stage builds on top of another and we develop capacities through those stages. Developmental psychologists have come up with their own theories as to how human beings develop. This leads theorists such as Jean Piaget, to argue that development happens in early childhood and stops once a child reaches adolescence, (meaning that the human being is fully developed by the time they reach their teen years), and it leads other theorists…show more content…
Adulthood and aging may be viewed as a series of transitions defined by such events.” Lifespan psychology is the study that examines the behavioural patterns and trends that occur through a person’s life, specifically examining growth, change and stability, and how these aspects change a person throughout the course of their life. “Most contemporary approaches in developmental psychology-including the lifespan perspective-examine the entire life-span” (Watts, Cockcroft, & Duncan, 2009). In the past, psychologists had the idea that human development was all based on nature versus nurture. “Over the past century there have been constant debates about the relative influence of “nature” or “nurture” in producing outcomes for individual lives” (Drewery, 2011). This meant that people were either shaped by their environment (nurture) or shaped by their biology (nature). However, this is no longer a valid perspective. People are a product of both nature and nurture. According to (Drewery, 2011), “Jean Piaget (1972) argued that biology is a major underpinning of, and constraint on, human cognition”. By studying lifespan psychology, we learn that while childhood development is important, the way you are brought up and the environment you grow up in, has consequences on your life. We study lifespan psychology to offer an organised account of development across the lifespan of humans, to identify…show more content…
In order for the more knowledgeable person to teach you a certain skill, they need to do it in such a way that they expand on the skills that you already know. This assumption is called the Zone of Proximal Development. This is where the most sensitive instruction should be given, so as not to confuse the learner. It allows the child to develop the skills that they already have and to use it on their own and go beyond the area’s they cannot do. The Zone of Proximal Development is between the ability of being able to do something and not being able to do something. The zone of guidance received allows transition from the set of skills already acquired to a more expanded set of skills. The idea of this assumption is that the child is able to expand their learning, they’re able to do something following the action of the more knowledgeable person, and they develop competence of that skill which allows them to develop in the future. In the previous example used, we were able to build the jigsaw puzzle after learning the skills taught by the more knowledgeable person, because in the past we may have already learnt how to put other things together such as shapes that are put into their certain shaped box. So in this sense the more knowledgeable person expanded on those basic set of skills we already developed earlier on in our life, and provided us with a more complex understanding of how to put things
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