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Unit of study_

PSYC3916: Developmental Psychology (Advanced)

This unit examines our understanding of human psychological development, focusing on selected issues and empirical traditions within the discipline of Developmental Psychology. Students are expected to gain an understanding of the theoretical influences that have come to dominate developmental research, and students will also be introduced to a range of theoretical and research approaches in contemporary Developmental Science. These include: sense of identity and self-worth, conceptual development, children's thinking, social cognition, moral reasoning and behaviour, and the role of genetic and environmental influences on development. The course will also consider applications of developmental research and theory in developmental psychopathology and in educational contexts, as well as exploring children's experience of art, literature and drama. Students are expected to gain knowledge of, and develop a critical approach to, the analysis of current research and theoretical issues in these areas. In the advanced unit of study students will collect, score, and analyse the data from children participating in research projects in the School's Developmental Laboratories.

Code PSYC3916
Academic unit Psychology Academic Operations
Credit points 6
A mark of 75 or above in any one PSYC2XXX unit of study

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. demonstrate a deep understanding of the patterns of child development, and the mechanisms that explain these patterns. This will entail a consideration of a broad literature focusing on both how the social environment shapes development, how genetic factors shape development, and how the action of children themselves shape their own environment and then further development. You should be able to explain both the latest theories and findings, and traditional philosophical approaches that founded this discipline early last century
  • LO2. consider how experimental design and analysis licenses certain conclusions and examine the tight connections between method and interpretation in relation to scientific critical thinking
  • LO3. explain complex patterns of data clearly and relate them to experimental hypotheses and methods in written assignments. You should be able to effectively communicate of results of ideas and engage in open discussion and debate
  • LO4. understand how basic research in child development informs applications outside the laboratory, such as in interventions to the family environment, the design of educational curricula and school structure, and to clinical practice, as well as consider the maintenance of ethical research practices.