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Unit of study_

PSYC3916: Developmental Psychology (Advanced)

Semester 2, 2021 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

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.

Unit details and rules

Unit code PSYC3916
Academic unit Psychology Academic Operations
Credit points 6
Prohibitions
? 
PSYC3016
Prerequisites
? 
A mark of 75 or above in any one PSYC2XXX unit of study
Corequisites
? 
None
Assumed knowledge
? 

None

Available to study abroad and exchange students

Yes

Teaching staff

Coordinator Micah Goldwater, micah.goldwater@sydney.edu.au
Type Description Weight Due Length
Final exam (Take-home short release) Type D final exam hurdle task Final Exam
Extended-answer questions
45% Formal exam period 3 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Participation Research Participation
See Canvas
5% Ongoing n/a
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Tutorial quiz Tutorial Quiz 1
See Canvas
2.22% Week 02 20 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Tutorial quiz Tutorial Quiz 2
See Canvas
2.22% Week 03 20 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Tutorial quiz Tutorial Quiz 3
See Canvas
2.22% Week 04 20 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Tutorial quiz Tutorial Quiz 4
See Canvas
2.22% Week 05 20 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Tutorial quiz Tutorial Quiz 5
See Canvas
2.22% Week 06 20 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Tutorial quiz Tutorial Quiz 6
See Canvas
2.22% Week 09 20 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Tutorial quiz Tutorial Quiz 7
See Canvas
2.22% Week 10 20 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Tutorial quiz Tutorial Quiz 8
See Canvas
2.22% Week 11 20 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Tutorial quiz Tutorial Quiz 9
See Canvas
2.24% Week 12 20 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO3 LO2
Assignment Essay
See Canvas
30% Week 12 2000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
hurdle task = hurdle task ?
Type D final exam = Type D final exam ?

Assessment summary

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range

Description

High distinction

85 - 100

 

Distinction

75 - 84

 

Credit

65 - 74

 

Pass

50 - 64

 

Fail

0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see sydney.edu.au/students/guide-to-grades.

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

This unit has an exception to the standard University policy or supplementary information has been provided by the unit coordinator. This information is displayed below:

You will receive a penalty of 5% of the maximum value of the assignment for each calendar day it is submitted after your due date. More than 10 calendar days after your due date, a mark of zero is applied. Submissions will not be accepted after the closing date.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 What is developmental psychology? Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Theory 1: classical views Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 02 Theory 2: assumptions and disputes Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Infant cognition 1: methods/object knowledge Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Piaget: cognitive or social development? Tutorial (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 03 Infant cognition 2: cause and effect Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Reasoning and concepts 1: emergence Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Early experience 1: arrested or accelerated development? Tutorial (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 04 Reasoning and concepts 2: abstract thought Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Reasoning and concepts 3: executive function Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Development of gender identity Tutorial (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 05 Reasoning and concepts 4: play and exploration Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Reasoning and concepts 5: cross-cultural differences Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
ADHD on trial? Is there really a disorder? Tutorial (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 06 Language development 1: introduction Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Language development 2: nativist approaches Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Early experience 2: Child abuse Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 07 Language development 3: constructivist approaches Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Sleep and the developing brain Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Research methods Tutorial (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 08 Nature vs. nurture Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 09 Behaviour genetics 1: the data is in! Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Behaviour genetics 2: what does the data mean? Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Cognitive development: conceptual change Tutorial (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 10 Social cognition 1: implicit and explicit theory of mind Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Social cognition 2: development and dysfunction Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Early experience 3: it’s in the genes! (or is it?) Tutorial (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 11 Social cognition 3: the limits of social understanding Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Moral development 1: sentimentalism and conscience Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Early experience 4: the early care giving environment Tutorial (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 12 Moral development 2: moral motivation and identity Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Affect and conduct Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Development gone wrong: affect and conduct disorders Tutorial (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 13 Adolescence Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Working with children: research and practice Lecture (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Required readings

All readings for this unit can be accessed through the Library eReserve, available on Canvas.

  • Textbook: Miller, P.H. (2011) Theories of Developmental Psychology (5th Ed.) NY: Worth Publishers.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

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.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities
GQ1 GQ2 GQ3 GQ4 GQ5 GQ6 GQ7 GQ8 GQ9

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

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Disclaimer

The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.