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Invitation to the Life Span

by Kathleen Stassen Berger

Chapter 1 The Science of
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
Defining Development
The science of
seeks to understand
how and why people
all kinds of people,
everywhere, of every
agechange over
Understanding How and Why
Five basic steps of the scientific method:
On the basis of theory, prior research, or a personal
observation, pose a question.
Develop a hypothesis, a specific prediction, that can be
Test the hypothesis. Design and conduct research to
gather empirical evidence (data).
Draw conclusions. Use the evidence to support or refute
the hypothesis.
Report the results. Share the data and conclusions, as
well as alternative explanation.
The Nature-Nurture Debate
Nature refers to the influence of genes
which we inherit.
Nurture refers to environmental
influences, such as:
health and diet of the embryos mother
Critical and Sensitive Periods
A critical period is a time when certain
things must occur for normal development.
A sensitive period is when a particular
development occurs most easily.
The Life-Span Perspective
Development is multidirectional
Over time, human characteristics change in
every direction.
Several major theorists describe stages of
development: Freud, Erickson, Piaget.
Others view development as a continuous
The Life-Span Perspective
Development Is Multicontextual
HISTORICAL CONTEXT- All persons born
within a few years of one another are said to be
a cohort, a group defined by the shared age of
its members.
The Life-Span Perspective
Socioeconomic Context
socioeconomic status (SES)
A persons position in society as determined by
income, wealth, occupation, education, and
place of residence.
The Life-Span Perspective
Development Is Multicultural
Culture - patterns of behavior that are passed
from one generation to the next.
Vygotsky described the interaction between
culture and education.
Ethnic group - People whose ancestors were
born in the same region and who often share a
language, culture, and religion
The Life-Span Perspective
Development Is
Genetics and
neuroscience are two of
the newer disciplines in
lifespan research.
Every traitpsychological
as well as physicalis
influenced by genes.
The Life-Span Perspective
Development Is Plastic
Human traits can be molded (as plastic can be),
yet people maintain a certain durability of identity
(as plastic does).
Mirror neurons- Cells in an observers brain that
respond to an action performed by someone
else in the same way they would if the observer
had actually performed that action.
Theories of Human
A developmental theory is a systematic
statement of principles and generalizations
that provides a framework for
understanding how and why people
change as they grow older.
Theories of Human
Psychoanalytic Theory
A theory of human development that holds that
irrational, unconscious drives and motives, often
originating in childhood, underlie human
Psychoanalytic theory originated with Sigmund
Freud (1856 1939)
Theories of Human
Ericksons Stages
Erik Erikson (19021994)
Described eight developmental stages, each
characterized by a challenging developmental
His first five stages build on Freuds theory; but,
he also described three adult stages.
Theories of Human
Theories of Human
A theory of human development that studies
observable behavior. Behaviorism is also called
learning theory, because it describes the laws
and processes by which behavior is learned.
Conditioning- According to behaviorism, the
processes by which responses become linked to
particular stimuli and learning takes place.
Theories of Human
Classical conditioning - Ivan Pavlov
(also called respondent conditioning), a process
in which a person or animal learns to associate a
neutral stimulus with a meaningful stimulus,
gradually reacting to the neutral stimulus with the
same response as to the meaningful one.
Theories of Human
Operant conditioning - B.F. Skinner
(also called instrumental conditioning) a learning
process in which a particular action is followed
either by something desired (which makes the
person or animal more likely to repeat the action)
or by something unwanted (which makes the
action less likely to be repeated).
Theories of Human
Theories of Human
Social Learning Theory - Albert Bandura (b.
An extension of behaviorism that emphasizes
the influence that other people have over a
persons behavior.
Modeling- people learn by observing other
people and then copying them.
Self-efficacy- (how effective people think they
are when it comes to changing themselves or
altering their social context.
Theories of Human
Cognitive Theory
Thoughts and expectations profoundly affect
Focuses on changes in how people think over
Jean Piaget (18961980)
Theories of Human
Theories of Human
Assimilation, in which new experiences
are interpreted to fit into, or assimilate
with, old ideas
Accommodation, in which old ideas are
restructured to include, or accommodate,
new experiences
Theories of Human
Systems Theory
Change in one part of a person, family, or society
affects every aspect of development
Ecological systems approach- Urie
Bronfenbrenner (19172005)
The person should be considered in all the
contexts and interactions that constitute a life.
Theories of Human
Five Components of Bronfenbrenners
microsystems (elements of the persons
immediate surroundings, such as family and
peer group)
exosystems (local institutions such as school
and church)
macrosystems (the larger social setting,
including cultural values, economic policies, and
political processes)
Theories of Human
chronosystem (literally, time system), which
affects the other three systems
mesosystem, consisting of the connections
among the other systems
Using the Scientific Method
Scientific Observation
requires the researcher to record behavior
systematically and objectively.
May be done in a naturalistic setting such as a
home, school, or other public place.
May be done in a laboratory.
Using the Scientific Method
The Experiment establishes causal
relationships among variables.
independent variable- the variable that is
introduced to see what effect it has on the
dependent variable.
dependent variable- the variable that may
change as a result of whatever new condition or
situation the experimenter adds.
Using the Scientific Method
experimental group- gets a particular
treatment (the independent variable).
comparison group (also called a control
group), which does not get the treatment.
Using the Scientific Method
Using the Scientific Method
The Survey
Information is collected from a large number of
people by interview, questionnaire, or some
other means.
Acquiring valid survey data is not easy.
Some people lie, some change their minds.
Survey answers are influenced by the wording
and the sequence of the questions.
Studying Development over the Life
Cross-sectional Research
Groups of people of one age are compared with
people of another age.
Longitudinal Research
Collecting data repeatedly on the same
individuals as they age.
Cross-sequential Research
Study several groups of people of different ages
(a cross-sectional approach) and follow them
over the years (a longitudinal approach).
Cautions from Science
Correlation and Causation
A correlation exists between two variables if
one variable is more (or less) likely to occur
when the other does.
A correlation is positive if both variables tend to
increase together or decrease together.
A correlation is negative if one variable tends to
increase while the other decreases.
A correlation is zero if no connection is evident.
Correlation is not causation
Each academic discipline and professional
society involved in the study of human
development has a code of ethics.
Researchers must ensure that participation is
voluntary, confidential, and harmless.
Subjects (participants in research) must give
informed consent- they must understand the
research procedures and any risks involved.
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 2 Genes and Prenatal
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
The Beginning of Life
DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid):
Molecule that contains the chemical
instructions for cells to manufacture various
Promotes growth and sustains life
Molecules of DNA
DNA consists of 46 chromosomes arranged in
23 pairs
The Beginning of Life
Reproductive cells (sperm and ova)
Each gamete consists of 23 chromosomes.
Two gametes (sperm and ovum) combine and produce
a new individual with 23 chromosomes from each
Specific sections of a chromosome that carry
instructions via four chemicals.
Chemicals are organized in four pairs (AT, TA, CG,
Each person has about 3 billion pairs.
The Beginning of Life
Genetic Variations and Similarities
Genes are passed down from
generation to generation
An organisms genetic
inheritance, or genetic potential
Unique for each organism
The observable characteristics
of an organism, including
appearance, personality,
intelligence, and all other traits.
Genetic Variations and Similarities
Many genes are identical for every human
Some genes vary slightly in their codes from
one person to another.
Variation of a gene or any of the possible forms in
which a gene for a particular trait can occur.
Effects of variations vary greatly from causing life-
threatening conditions to having no detectable effect
at all.
The Human Genome
Genetic Diversity
Distinguishes each person
Allows the human species to adapt to pressures of
the environment (e.g. climate changes, illnesses).
The full set of genes that are the instructions to make
an individual member of a certain species
Similarity between two people: 99.5%
Similarity between humans and chimpanzees: 98%
Similarity between humans and every other
mammal: 90+%
Human Genome Project and
Human Genome Project:
Found only about 20,000 genes in humans
Exact number is unknown
International project trying to spot all
variations in the human genome
Found 11 million variations among the 3
billion chemical pairs
Siblings and Twins
Sibling Similarities
Each sibling gets abut 10,000 genes from each
Millions of variations and billions of combinations
are possible.
Full siblings are not necessarily alike.
Monozygotic (identical) twins:
Originate from one zygote that splits apart very
early in development.
Incomplete split results in conjoined twins.
Same genotype but slight variations in phenotype
are possible due to environmental influences.
Siblings and Twins
Dizygotic (fraternal) twins
Result from fertilization of two separate ova by
two separate sperm.
Dizygotic twins have half their genes in
common and occur twice as often as
monozygotic twins.
Incidence is genetic and varies by ethnicity
and age.
Male and Female
Humans usually possess 46
44 autosomes and 2 sex chromosomes
Females: XX
Males: XY
Sex of offspring depends on whether the
fathers Y sperm or X sperm fertilizes the
Male and Female
Genetic Interactions
Almost every trait is:
polygenic (affected by many genes)
multifactorial (influenced by many factors)
Regulator genes
Direct the interactions of other genes,
controlling their genetic expression,
duplication, and transcription
Responsible for differences between species
Additive Heredity
Additive genes
Genes that add something to some aspect of
the phenotype
Effects of additive genes add up to make the
Example: Height is affected by the
contributions of about 100 genes
Dominant-Recessive Heredity
Dominant gene is far more influential than the
recessive gene (non-additive).
Dominant gene can completely control the
phenotype with no noticeable effect of recessive
Genes for blood type B and Rh-positive blood are
Effect of recessive genes can sometimes be
Dominant brown eye gene and recessive blue eye
gene can result in hazel eyes.
A person whose genotype includes a gene
that is not expressed in the phenotype
Unexpressed gene occurs in half of the
carriers gametes and is passed on to half of
the carriers offspring
Offspring can be carrier or express the gene
in the phenotype (e.g. when unexpressed
gene is inherited by both parents)
Statistical term that indicates what portion
of the variation in a particular trait within a
particular population is inherited.
Example: 90% of the height differences
among children of the same age is genetic.
Environment can affect the expression of
inherited genes.
Genetic Problems
a) Chromosomal Abnormalities
Down Syndrome (Trisomy-21)
Three copies of chromosome 21
Specific facial characteristics (thick
tongue, round face, slanted eyes)
Hearing losses, heart abnormalities,
muscle weakness, short stature
Slow to develop language
Accelerated aging (cataracts,
dementia, certain forms of cancer
common at age 40)
b) Abnormalities of the Sex Chromosomes
Turner Syndrome (X only):
Unusually short, underdeveloped female organs,
Slow to develop
Problems in spatial understanding
Klinefelter Syndrome (XXY):
Symptoms include learning problems and infertility
Boys penis does not grow during puberty and fat
accumulates around the breast area
Sometimes not recognized until adulthood
Genetic Problems
Genetic Problems
Gene Disorders
a) Dominant Disorders
Half of the offspring of parents with a dominant
disorder will have the disorder.
Most dominant disorders begin in adulthood (fatal
dominant childhood conditions cannot be passed on).
Many dominant disorders have relatively mild or
variable symptoms.
Tourette syndrome
Some who inherit the dominant gene exhibit uncontrollable tics
and explosive outbursts
Most have milder, barely noticeable symptoms
b) Recessive Disorders
Millions of different types, lethal conditions are
Sickle-cell trait
Offers some protection against malaria
African carriers are more likely than non-carriers to
Cystic fibrosis
More common among people with northern
European ancestors
Carriers may have been protected against cholera
Genetic Problems
Genetic Problems
Sex-Linked Conditions
All X-linked conditions are more common in boys;
girls are likely to be protected by their second X
Fragile X Syndrome
Most common form of inherited mental retardation
Additional symptoms include muscle weakness, shyness, and
poor social skills
Blood clotting is inhibited
Blood transfusions can save childrens lives
Color blindness
Most common sex-linked condition
Often passed on because it is not debilitating
Sex-Linked Conditions
Advising Prospective Parents
Genetic Counseling
Consultation and testing by trained professionals
Enables prospective parents to learn about their
genetic heritage, including harmful conditions that
may be passed on to their offspring
Ethical Guidelines
Test results are kept confidential
Decisions regarding sterilization, adoption, abortion,
or carrying a pregnancy to term are made by the
Advising Prospective Parents
Presenting the Facts
Potential genetic counseling
Prospective parents must base
some decisions on odds
Tests often reveal that more
tests are needed
False positives and false
True positives may cause
additional stress
PKU: A Success Story
Phenylketonuria (PKU)
Recessive condition
Results in inability to metabolize
phenylalanine (amino acid found in many
Buildup of phenylalanine causes brain
damage, progressive mental retardation, and
other symptoms
Early testing and a special diet usually results
in normal development
From Zygote to Newborn
Three main periods of prenatal development
1. Germinal Period (first two weeks after
conception): rapid cell division and beginning of
cell differentiation
2. Embryonic Period (3
through 8
week): basic
forms of all body structures develop
3. Fetal Period (9
week until birth): fetus grows in
size and matures in functioning
The Germinal Period
Zygote begins duplication and division within
hours of conception
Development of the placenta
Organ that surrounds the developing embryo and is
attached to the wall of the uterus
Sustains life via the umbilical chord (nourishes
organism and carries waste products away)
Implantation (about 10 days after conception)
Developing organism burrows into the placenta that
lines the uterus
Organism grows rapidly
Pregnancy can be detected due to new chemicals in
the mothers urine
The Germinal Period
The Germinal Period
The Embryonic Period
Developing human organism from about the 3

through the 8
week after conception
Begins when the primitive streak appears down the
middle of the cell mass
Primitive streak becomes the neural tube and later
forms the brain and spine of the CNS
Head takes shape
Eyes, ears, nose, and mouth form
Heart begins to pulsate
Extremities develop and webbed fingers and toes
The Embryonic Period
The Fetal Period
Developing human organism from the
start of the 9
week after conception
until birth
Genitals form and sex hormones cause
differences in fetal brain organization
Cephalocaudal and proximodistal
Heartbeat detectable via stethoscope
All body parts and systems complete
prenatal development
Cortex is not fully mature at birth (e.g.
prefrontal lobes)
Brain at birth is far bigger than any
other part of the baby
The Fetal Period
Age of viability
Age at which a preterm
newborn may survive outside
the mothers uterus if medical
care is available
About 22 weeks after
Brain is able to regulate basic
body functions (e.g.
Chances of survival increase
with each day after the 22-
week mark
The Fetal Period
Fetal brain signals the release of hormones to
trigger the females uterine muscles
Labor begins
Average duration for firstborn babies: 12 hours
Quicker labor for later-born babies
Apgar scale
Quick assessment of newborns heart rate, breathing,
muscle tone, color, and reflexes
Completed twice (1 minute and 5 minutes after birth)
Score of 0, 1, or 2 in each category
Desired score: 7 or above
Traditional and Modern Birthing
Home births
Hospital births
Woman who helps with labor, delivery, breast-
feeding, and newborn care
May be related to lower rate of cesarean
Cesarean Section (C-Section)
Surgical birth
Fetus can be removed quickly
Rates and reasons for c-sections vary greatly
Lower rates in poorer countries (emergencies)
Higher rates in richer countries (planned for the
convenience of mother and/or obstetrician)
1/3 of births in the United States
Less trauma for the newborn but slower
recovery for the mother
Subsequent cesarean deliveries may be
Medical Intervention
Infant mortality has decreased due to better
medical care
1900: 5%
Today: <1 in 200
Childbirth has become safer for mothers
Death rate in poorest nations: 1 in 20 women
Excessive medical care also has disadvantages
Increase in unnecessary c-sections is associated with
higher rate of low-birth weight babies
Low Birthweight
Low birthweight (LBW)
Less than 2,500 grams (5! pounds) at birth
United States
Steady increase in LBW over the past 25 years
8% of newborns are seriously underweight
More susceptible to teratogens, higher birth risks, lower
survival rate
Very low birthweight (VLBW)
Under 1,500 grams (3 pounds, 5 ounces) at birth
Extremely low birthweight
Under 1,000 grams (2 pounds, 3 ounces) at birth
Preterm or Slow Growing?
Birth that occurs at 35 or fewer weeks after
Usually associated with low birthweight
Small for gestational age (SGA)
Birthweight is significantly lower than
expected, given the time since conception
Suggests impairment throughout prenatal
development and serious problems
Causes of Low Birthweight
Genetic factors
Maternal illness
Drug use
Multiple births
Mothers, Fathers, and a Good Start
The Fathers Role
Supportive father helps mother stay healthy
Father can decrease or increase mothers
stress (affects fetus)
Most fathers are helpful to their pregnant
Two way street: Pregnant mothers should
support, involve, and encourage fathers
The Importance of Close Contact
Birth complications can have lingering impact on
later life
Mothers and fathers should help with early
caregiving if newborn must stay in the hospital
Kangaroo care
Child-care technique in which the mother of a low-
birthweight infant holds the baby between her breasts
Allows baby to hear mothers heartbeat and feel her
body heat
Research confirms beneficial effects
Postpartum Depression
Sadness and inadequacy felt by 8-15% of new
mothers in the days and weeks after giving birth
Symptoms range from baby blues to postpartum
Depressed mothers find baby care burdensome
and may think about mistreating the infant
Paternal involvement can have beneficial effect
Some fathers are depressed themselves
Causes for Postpartum Depression vary
Parent-Infant Bond
The strong, loving connection that forms as
parents hold, examine, and feed the newborn
Early skin-to-skin contact is not essential
Cross-fostering in monkeys
Newborns are removed from their mothers and
raised by another female or male
Strong and beneficial relationship sometimes
Nature, Nurture, and the Phenotype
Four general research conclusions
1. Genes affect every aspect of human behavior
2. Nongenetic influences begin at conception and
continue lifelong, sometimes altering genetic
3. Most environmental influences on children raised in the
same home are NOT shared, partly because parents
treat each child differently
4. Children , adolescents, and adults niche-pick,
choosing environments that are compatible with their
genetic inheritance
Nearsightedness or Myopia
High (more severe) and
low (less severe)
Low nearsightedness runs in
families and is associated with
minor variations in the Pax6 gene
Environment also plays a role
Increase in nearsightedness among
East Asian schoolchildren
Increased schoolwork may have
caused nearsightedness in children
with a Pax6 allelle
Alcoholism probably has a genetic basis
Genes can cause an overpowering addictive pull in
some people
Environmental conditions can modify the genetic
Nature and nurture must combine to create an
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS)
A cluster of birth defects that may occur in the child of
a woman who drinks alcohol while pregnant
Includes abnormal facial characteristics, slow physical
growth, and retarded mental development
Prenatal Teratogens
Substances and conditions that can impair
prenatal development and result in birth defects
or even death
Not all teratogens can be avoided
Structural abnormalities are obvious at birth
Behavioral teratogens
Affect the childs developing brain
Can cause developmental retardation, hyperactivity,
and learning disabilities
Effects do not become evident for months or years
Significant Factors
1. Genetic Vulnerability
Some zygotes carry genes that make them
Certain genes increase likelihood of cleft lip in
Japanese people
Some women do not metabolize folic acid well
Increases rates of neural-tube defects (e.g. spina
Folic acid was added to many foods in the United
States and Canada and rates have decreased
Significant Factors
2. Timing of Exposure
Critical period: time when a body part
First two months for structural abnormalities
Often before woman knows she is pregnant
Time when most spontaneous abortions
Sensitive period: time when teratogens can
interfere with recent growth
3. Amount of Exposure
Threshold effect: Certain teratogens are relatively
harmless until exposure reaches a certain level
Bisphenol A (BPA)
Chemical compound used to make clear plastic
Small doses are harmless but threshold for humans is
Pregnant mothers should avoid plastic containers and
Prescription drugs
Vitamin A
High doses can be harmful
Significant Factors
Resolving Uncertainties
Pregnancy does not have to be an anxious
Good prenatal care can
teach women what they can do to have
healthy babies
save lives
reassure parents that all is well
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 3- The First Two Years
Body and Brain
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
Body Changes
Height and Weight
Average weight at birth: 7.5 pounds
Average length: 20 inches
These numbers are norms, an average
Body Changes
Well-baby checkup
Doctor or nurse measures babys growth:
height, weight, and head circumference.
Abnormal growth may indicate physical or
psychological problems.
Headsparing- A biological mechanism that
protects the brain when malnutrition disrupts
body growth. The brain is the last part of the
body to be damaged by malnutrition.
Body Changes
Body Changes
Brain Development
Neuron- nerve cell. Billions in the central
nervous system.
Cortex- the outer layers of the brain.
Axon- a fiber that extends from a
neuron and transmits
electrochemical impulses from
that neuron to the dendrites of
other neurons.
Body Changes
Dendrite- a fiber that extends from a neuron
and receives electrochemical impulses
transmitted from other neurons via their
Synapse- the intersection between the axon
of one neuron and the dendrites of other
Neurotransmitter- a brain chemical that
carries information from the axon of a
sending neuron to the dendrites of a
receiving neuron.
Body Changes
Body Changes
Neurons and synapses proliferate (increase rapidly in
number) before birth. This increase continues at a
fast pace after birth, but soon an opposite
phenomenon occurs: the elimination, or pruning, of
unnecessary connections.
The last part of the brain to mature is the prefrontal
cortex, the area for anticipation, planning, and
impulse control.
Shaken baby syndrome- a life-threatening injury that
occurs when an infant is forcefully shaken back and
forth, a motion that ruptures blood vessels in the brain
and breaks neural connections.
Body Changes
Newborns sleep about 17 hours a day, in one- to
three-hour segments.
Newborns sleep is primarily active sleep: often
dozing, able to awaken if someone rouses them,
but also able to go back to sleep quickly if they
wake up, cry, and are comforted.
Quiet sleep: slow brain waves and slow breathing
Newborns have a high proportion of REM (rapid
eye movement) sleep, with flickering eyes and
rapid brain waves.
Moving and Perceiving
Motor Skills
The first movements are not skills but
reflexes, involuntary responses to a
particular stimulus.
Moving and Perceiving
Some reflexes help insure survival: breathing, thrashing,
shivering, sucking, rooting, swallowing, spitting up.
Other reflexes are signs of normal functioning:
Babinski reflex. When infants feet are stroked, their toes fan
Stepping reflex. When infants are held upright with their feet
touching a flat surface, they move their legs as if to walk.
Swimming reflex. When they are laid horizontally on their
stomachs, infants stretch out their arms and legs.
Palmar grasping reflex. When something touches infants palms,
they grip it tightly.
Moro reflex. When someone startles them, perhaps by banging on
the table they are lying on, infants fling their arms outward and then
bring them together on their chests, as if to hold on to something,
while crying with wide-open eyes.
Moving and Perceiving
Gross motor skills- Physical abilities
involving large body movements, such as
walking and jumping.
Fine motor skills- Physical abilities
involving small body movements,
especially of the hands and fingers, such
as drawing and picking up a coin.
Moving and Perceiving
Moving and Perceiving
Sensation and Perception
Sensation- The response of a sensory
system (eyes, ears, skin, tongue, nose)
when it detects a stimulus.
Perception- The mental processing of
sensory information when the brain
interprets a sensation.
Sensory development- typically precedes
intellectual and motor development.
Moving and Perceiving
The sense of hearing develops during the
last trimester of pregnancy and is already
quite acute at birth; it is the most advanced of
the newborns senses.
Vision is the least mature sense at birth.
Newborns focus only on objects between 4 and
30 inches away.
Binocular vision, the ability to coordinate the two
eyes to see one image, appears at 3 months.
Sensation is essential for the visual cortex to
develop normally.
Surviving in Good Health
Surviving in Good Health
Preventing Sudden Infant Death Syndrome
In 1990, about 5,000 babies died of sudden
infant death syndrome (SIDS) in the United
The actual cause of SIDS is still unknown: low
birthweight, heavy clothing, soft bedding,
teenage parenthood, and, particularly, maternal
smoking are risk factors.
Putting infants to sleep on their backs reduces
the risk but does not eliminate it.
Surviving in Good Health
Adequate Nutrition
For every infant disease (including SIDS),
breast-feeding reduces risk and malnutrition
increases it, stunting growth of body and
Breastfed babies are less likely to develop
allergies, asthma, obesity, and heart disease.
As the infant gets older, the composition of
breast milk adjusts to the babys changing
nutritional needs.
Infant Cognition
sensorimotor intelligence
Piagets term for the way infants thinkby using their senses
and motor skillsduring the first period of cognitive
Piagets term for a type of adaptation in which new experiences
are interpreted to fit into, or assimilate with, old ideas.
Piagets term for a type of adaptation in which old ideas are
restructured to include, or accommodate, new experiences.
object permanence
The realization that objects (including people) still exist when
they can no longer be seen, touched, or hear.
Infant Cognition
Infant Cognition
Information-processing Theory
A perspective modeled on computer
Information-processing theorists believe that
a step-by-step description of the mechanisms
of thought adds insight to our understanding
of cognition at every age.
Information-processing research has
overturned some of Piagets conclusions
including the concept of object permanence.
Infant Cognition
The visual cliff was designed to provide
the illusion of a sudden dropoff between
one horizontal surface and another.
Mothers were able to urge their 6-month-
olds to wiggle forward over the supposed
edge of the cliff, but 10-month-olds
fearfully refused to budge.
Infant Cognition
Early Memory
According to classic developmental theory,
infants store no memories in their first year.
Developmentalists now agree that very
young infants can remember if the following
conditions are met:
Experimental conditions are similar to real life.
Motivation is high.
Special measures aid memory retrieval.
Language Learning
Early Communication
Child-directed speech- The high-pitched,
simplified, and repetitive way adults speak to
infants. (Also called baby talk or
Babbling- The extended repetition of certain
syllables, such as ba-ba-ba, that begins
when babies are between 6 and 9 months
Naming explosion- A sudden increase in an
infants vocabulary, especially in the number
of nouns, that begins at about 18 months of
Language Learning
First Words
At about 1 year, babies speak a few
Spoken vocabulary increases gradually
(about one or two new words a week).
Once spoken vocabulary reaches about
50 words, it builds quickly, at a rate of 50
to 100 words per month.
Language Learning
Cultural Differences in Language Use
Holophrase- A single word that is used to
express a complete, meaningful thought.
All new talkers say names and utter
Infants differ in their use of various parts of
speech, depending on the language they
are learning, e.g. more nouns and fewer
Language Learning
Acquiring Grammar
Grammar includes all the devices by
which words communicate meaning:
sequence, prefixes, suffixes, intonation,
loudness, verb forms, pronouns,
negations, prepositions, and articles.
Worldwide, people who are not yet 2 years
old already use language well.
Language Learning
Hypotheses About Language Development
Learning Approach
Infants need to be taught
B. F. Skinner (1957) noticed that spontaneous
babbling is usually reinforced.
Parents are expert teachers, and other caregivers
help them teach children to speak.
Frequent repetition of words is instructive,
especially when the words are linked to the
pleasures of daily life.
Well-taught infants become well-spoken children.
Language Learning
Language Learning is Innate
Language acquisition device (LAD)-
Chomskys term for a hypothesized mental
structure that enables humans to learn
language, including the basic aspects of
grammar, vocabulary, and intonation.
Language Learning
Social Impulse Toward Communication
Infants communicate in every way they
can because humans are social beings,
dependent on one another for survival,
well-being, and joy.
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 4 The First Two Years:
Psychosocial Development
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
Emotional Development
Infants Emotions
Smiling and Laughing
Social smile (6 weeks): Evoked by viewing human faces
Laughter (3 to 4 months): Often associated with curiosity
First expressions at around 6 month
Healthy response to frustration
Indicates withdrawal and is accompanied by increased
production of cortisol
Stressful experience for infants
Fear: Emerges at about 9 months in
response to people, things, or situations
Stranger wariness:
Infant no longer smiles at any friendly face
but cries or looks frightened when an
unfamiliar person moves too close
Separation anxiety:
Tears, dismay, or anger when a familiar
caregiver leaves.
If it remains strong after age 3, it may be
considered an emotional disorder.
Emotional Development
Toddlers Emotions
Anger and fear become less frequent and more focused
Laughing and crying become louder and more
New emotions:
Require an awareness of other people
Emerge from family interactions, influenced by the
Emotional Development
A persons realization that he or she is a distinct
individual whose body, mind, and actions are
separate from those of other people.
First 4 months: Infants have no sense of self and
may see themselves as part of their mothers.
5 months: Infants begin to develop an
awareness of themselves as separate from their
15-18 months: Emergence of the Me-self
Sense of self as the object of ones knowledge
Emotional Development
Mirror Recognition
Classic experiment (M. Lewis &
Brooks, 1978)
Babies aged 924 months looked
into a mirror after a dot of rouge
had been put on their noses.
None of the babies younger than
12 months old reacted as if they
knew the mark was on them.
15- to 24-month-olds: Showed
self-awareness by touching their
own noses with curiosity.
Emotional Development
Emotional Development
Brain Maturation and the Emotions
The stimulation of one sensory stimulus to the brain
(sound, sight, touch, taste, or smell) by another.
Common in infants because boundaries between
sensory parts of the cortex are less distinct.
Cross-modal perception
Infant associates textures with vision, sounds with
smells, own body with the bodies of others
Basis for early social understanding
Synesthesia of emotions
Infants cry can be triggered by pain, fear, tiredness, or
excitement; laughter can turn to tears.
Infants emotions are difficult to predict because of the
way their brains are activated.
Social Impulses
Emotional Self-regulation
Directly connected to maturation of the anterior
cingulate gyrus
Particular people begin to arouse specific
Toddlers get angry when a teasing older sibling
approaches them or react with fear when entering the
doctors office.
Memory triggers specific emotions based on previous
Regulates various bodily functions and hormone production
May grow more slowly in stressed than in nonstressed infants
Abuse (form of chronic stress)
Potential long-term effects on a childs emotional
High levels of stress hormones indicative of emotional
Excessive stress in infants must be prevented
Stress can be avoided by:
providing new mothers with help and emotional support
involving new fathers in the care of the infant
strengthening the relationship between mother and father
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
Oral stage (first year): The mouth is the young infants primary
source of gratification
Anal stage (second year): Infants main pleasure comes from the
anus (e.g. sensual pleasure of bowel movements and the
psychological pleasure of controlling them)
Potential conflicts:
Oral fixation: If a mother frustrates her infants urge to suck, the child
may become an adult who is stuck (fixated) at the oral stage (e.g.
eats, drinks, chews, bites, or talks excessively)
Anal personality: Overly strict or premature toilet training may result
in an adult with an unusually strong need for control, regularity and
Trust versus Mistrust
Infants learn basic trust if the world is a secure place
where their basic needs are met
Autonomy versus Shame and Doubt
Toddlers either succeed or fail in gaining a sense of
self-rule over their actions and their bodies
Early problems can create an adult who is
suspicious and pessimistic (mistrusting) or who
is easily shamed (insufficient autonomy)
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
Parents mold an infants emotions and
personality through reinforcement and
Social learning
The acquisition of behavior patterns by observing the
behavior of others
Demonstrated in the classic Bobo Doll study by Albert
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
Working model: Set of assumptions that the
individual uses to organize perceptions and
A person might assume that other people are
trustworthy and be surprised by evidence that this
working model of human behavior is erroneous.
The childs interpretation of early experiences is more
important than the experiences themselves.
New working models can be developed based on new
experiences or reinterpretation of previous
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
A theory that underlies the values and practices
of a culture but is not usually apparent to the
people within the culture.
Cultures ethnotheory includes the belief in
Children are not expected to show respect for adults,
but adults must show respect for their reborn
ancestors ! indulgent child-rearing
Perceived as extremely lenient by Western cultures
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
Epigenetic approach to development,
using all five characteristics of the life-
span perspective (multidirectional,
multicontextual, multicultural, multi
disciplinary, and plastic)
Systems theory is especially insightful in
interpreting temperament.
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
Inborn differences between one person and
another in emotions, activity, and self-
Temperament is epigenetic, originating in the
genes but affected by child-rearing practices
New York Longitudinal Study (NYLS)
Started in the 1960s
Found 4 categories of temperament
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
Easy (40%)
Difficult (10%)
Slow to warm up (15%)
Hard to classify (35%)
Additional findings:
Temperament often changes in the early weeks
but is increasingly stable by age 3
Extreme temperaments at age 3 tend to carry
over to adolescence and young adulthood
Parenting practices are crucial, temperament
can change or be changed
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
The Big Five (acronym OCEAN)
Five basic clusters of personality traits that remain
quite stable throughout life
Found in many cultures and among people of all
1. Openness: imaginative, curious, welcoming new
2. Conscientiousness: organized, deliberate, conforming
3. Extroversion: outgoing, assertive, active
4. Agreeableness: kind, helpful, easygoing
5. Neuroticism: anxious, moody, self-critical
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
Longitudinal study of infant temperament (Fox et al.,
2001): Grouped 4-month-olds into three distinct types
based on responses to fearful stimulation
Positive (exuberant)
Inhibited (fearful)
Less than half altered their responses as they grew older
Fearful infants were most likely to change
Exuberant infants were least likely to change
Maturation and child rearing has effect on inborn temperament
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
Theories of Infant Psychosocial
The Effects of Parenting
Proximal parenting
Caregiving practices that involve being
physically close to the baby, with frequent
holding and touching
Distal parenting
Caregiving practices that involve remaining
distant from the baby, providing toys, food,
and face-to-face communication with minimal
holding and touching
The Effects of Parenting
Goodness of Fit
A similarity of temperament and values that
produces a smooth interaction between an
individual and his or her social context, including
family, school, and community
With a good fit
parents of difficult babies build a close relationship
parents of exuberant, curious infants learn to protect
them from harm
parents of slow-to-warm-up toddlers give them time to
A coordinated, rapid, and smooth
exchange of responses between a
caregiver and an infant
Synchrony in the first few months
Becomes more frequent and more
Helps infants learn to read others
emotions and to develop the skills of
social interaction
Synchrony usually begins with
parents imitating infants
Is Synchrony Needed for Normal
Experiments using the still-face technique
An experimental practice in which an adult keeps his
or her face unmoving and expressionless in face-to-
face interaction with an infant
Babies are very upset by the still face and show signs
of stress
A parents responsiveness to an infant aids
psychological and biological development
Infants brains need social interaction to develop to
their fullest
Attachment is a lasting emotional bond
that one person has with another.
Attachments begin to form in early infancy
and influence a persons close relationships
throughout life
Attachment Types
1. Secure attachment: An infant obtains both comfort
and confidence from the presence of his or her
2. Insecure-avoidant attachment: An infant avoids
connection with the caregiver, as when the infant
seems not to care about the caregivers presence,
departure, or return.
3. Insecure-resistant/ambivalent attachment: An
infants anxiety and uncertainty are evident, as when
the infant becomes very upset at separation from the
caregiver and both resists and seeks contact on
4. Disorganized attachment: A type of attachment that
is marked by an infants inconsistent reactions to the
caregivers departure and return.
Attachment Types
Measuring Attachment
Strange Situation
A laboratory procedure for measuring attachment by
evoking infants reactions to the stress of various
adults comings and goings in an unfamiliar playroom.
Key behaviors to observe:
Exploration of the toys. A secure toddler plays
Reaction to the caregivers departure. A secure
toddler misses the caregiver.
Reaction to the caregivers return. A secure toddler
welcomes the caregivers reappearance.
Measuring Attachment
Measuring Attachment
Social Referencing
Social referencing
Seeking information about how to
react to an unfamiliar or
ambiguous object or event by
observing someone elses
expressions and reactions. That
other person becomes a social
Mothers use a variety of
expressions, vocalizations, and
gestures to convey social
information to their infants.
Fathers as Social Partners
Fathers usually spend less time with
infants than mothers do and are less
involved parents
Fathers own ideas of appropriate
male behavior
Mothers often limit fathers
interactions with their children
Quality of marital relationship is best
Happier husbands tend to be
more involved fathers
Comparing Mothers and Fathers
Selected research findings:
Teenagers are less likely to lash out at friends and authorities if
they experienced a warm, responsive relationship with their
fathers as infants (Trautmann-Villalba et al., 2006).
Infants may be equally securely attached to both parents, more
attached to their mothers, or more attached to their fathers
(Belsky et al., 2006).
Close fatherinfant relationships can teach infants (especially
boys) appropriate expressions of emotion (Boyce et al., 2006).
Close relationships with their infants reduce fathers risk of
depression (Borke et al., 2007; Bronte-Tinkew et al., 2007).
Mothers tend to engage in more caregiving and comforting, and
fathers tend to engage in more high-intensity play (Kochanska et
al., 2008).
When toddlers are about to explore, they often seek their fathers
approval, expecting fun from their fathers and comfort from their
mothers (Lamb, 2000).
Infant Day Care
Family day care
Child care that includes several children of various
ages and usually occurs in the home of a woman who
is paid to provide it.
Center day care
Child care that occurs in a place especially designed
for the purpose, where several paid adults care for
many children.
Usually the children are grouped by age, the day-care
center is licensed, and providers are trained and
certified in child development.
Infant Day Care
The Effects of Infant Day Care
The impact of nonmaternal care depends on
many factors.
Psychosocial characteristics, including secure
attachment, are influenced more by the mothers
warmth than by the number of hours spent in
nonmaternal care.
Quality of care is crucial, no matter who provides
that care.
The Effects of Infant Day Care
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 5- Early Childhood
Body and Mind
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
Body Changes
Growth Patterns
Children become slimmer as the lower
body lengthens.
Each year from age 2 through 6, well-
nourished children add almost 3 inches in
height and gain about 4 12 pounds in
Center of gravity moves from the
breastbone down to the belly button.
Body Changes
Children need far fewer calories per pound of body
weight than infants do.
Obesity is a more frequent problem than
Children in low-income families are especially
vulnerable to obesity because their cultures still
guard against undernutrition and their parents may
rely on fast foods.
Overfeeding is causing an epidemic of illnesses
associated with obesity, such as heart disease
and diabetes.
Body Changes
Many children want foods that are high in
fat, salt, and sugar.
Adults frequently give in, even rewarding
children with candy.
Too much sugar and too little fiber rot the
Tooth decay is the most common disease of
young children in developed nations
affects more than one-third of all children
under age 6 in the United States .
Body Changes
Just Right
Some children insist on eating only certain foods,
prepared and presented in a particular way. This rigidity,
known as the just-right phenomenon, would be
pathological in adults but is normal in children under age
When 1,500 parents were surveyed about their 1- to 6-
year-olds (Evans et al., 1997), their responses indicated
that over 75 percent of the 3-year-olds (the peak age)
evidenced some just-right tendency, in that they:
Preferred to have things done in a particular order or in a certain
Had a strong preference to wear (or not wear) certain clothes
Prepared for bedtime by engaging in a special activity, routine,
or ritual
Had strong preferences for certain foods
Body Changes
Motor Skills
Children develop all their motor skills
spontaneously and diligently as they play.
By age 6, most North Americans ride
tricycles; climb ladders; pump their legs on
swings; and throw, catch, and kick balls.
Muscle growth, brain maturation, and guided
practice advance every gross motor skill.
Practice improves dexterity and advances
fine motor skills, which involve small body
Brain Development
By age 2, a childs brain weighs 75
percent of what it will in adulthood, and
extensive sprouting and then pruning of
dendrites has already taken place.
The brain reaches 90 percent of adult
weight by age 6.
Brain Development
Brain Development
Speed of Thought
The primary reason for faster thinking is
new and extensive myelination.
Myelin is a fatty coating on the axons that
speeds signals between neurons.
A gradual increase in myelination makes
5-year-olds much quicker than 3-year-
olds, who themselves are quicker than
Brain Development
One part of the brain that grows and myelinates
rapidly during early childhood is the corpus
callosum, a band of nerve fibers that connects the
left and right sides of the brain.
Growth of the corpus callosum makes
communication between the two brain
hemispheres more efficient.
Lateralization- Literally, sidedness, referring to
the specialization in certain functions by each side
of the brain, with one side dominant for each
Brain Development
The Prefrontal Cortex
Maturation of the prefrontal cortex gradually
enables children to focus attention and curb
Before such maturation, many young children
jump from task to task; they cannot stay
Others act in the opposite way: In a
phenomenon called perseveration, some
children persevere in, or stick to, one thought
or action, unable to quit.
Brain Development
From ages 2 to 6, maturation of the
prefrontal cortex has several notable
! Sleep becomes more regular.
! Emotions become more nuanced and
! Temper tantrums subside.
Brain Development
Emotions and the Brain
Limbic System- parts of the brain that are crucial
in the expression and regulation of emotions
Amygdala- A tiny brain structure that registers
emotions, particularly fear and anxiety.
Hippocampus- A brain structure that is a central
processor of memory, especially memory for
Hypothalamus- A brain area that responds to the
amygdala and the hippocampus to produce
hormones that activate other parts of the brain and
Prolonged stress may lead to emotional and
cognitive impairment.
Thinking During Early Childhood
Piaget: Preoperational Thought
Preoperational means before (pre)
logical operations (reasoning processes).
The childs verbal ability permits symbolic
thinking. Language frees the child from
the limits of sensorimotor experience.
Thinking During Early Childhood
Characteristics of preoperational thought:
Centration- A characteristic of preoperational
thought whereby a young child focuses
(centers) on one idea, excluding all others.
Egocentrism- Piagets term for young
childrens tendency to think about the world
entirely from their own personal perspective.
Focus on appearance- A characteristic of
preoperational thought whereby a young
child ignores all attributes that are not
Thinking During Early Childhood
Characteristics of preoperational thought:
Static reasoning- A characteristic of preoperational
thought whereby a young child thinks that nothing
changes. Whatever is now has always been and
always will be.
Irreversibility- A characteristic of preoperational
thought whereby a young child thinks that nothing can
be undone. A thing cannot be restored to the way it
was before a change occurred.
Conservation- The principle that the amount of a
substance remains the same (i.e., is conserved) when
its appearance changes.
Animism- The belief that natural objects and
phenomena are alive.
Thinking During Early Childhood
Thinking During Early Childhood
Vygotsky: Social Learning
Every aspect of childrens cognitive
development is embedded in the social
Apprentice in thinking- Vygotskys term for
a person whose cognition is stimulated
and directed by older and more skilled
members of society.
Thinking During Early Childhood
Zone of proximal development (ZPD)-
Vygotskys term for the skillscognitive as
well as physicalthat a person can
exercise only with assistance, not yet
Scaffolding- Temporary support that is
tailored to a learners needs and abilities
and aimed at helping the learner master
the next task in a given learning process.
Thinking During Early Childhood
Private speech- The internal dialogue that
occurs when people talk to themselves
(either silently or out loud).
Social mediation- Human interaction that
expands and advances understanding,
often through words that one person uses
to explain something to another.
Thinking During Early Childhood
Children Theories
Theory-theory- The idea that children
attempt to explain everything they see and
Theory of mind- A persons theory of what
other people might be thinking. In order to
have a theory of mind, children must realize
that other people are not necessarily thinking
the same thoughts that they themselves are.
That realization is seldom achieved before
age 4.
Language is pivotal to every kind of
cognition in early childhood.
Early childhood is a sensitive period, the
best time to master vocabulary, grammar,
and pronunciation.
The average child knows about 500 words
at age 2 and more than 10,000 at age 6.
The naming explosion (explained in
Chapter 3) becomes more general: Verbs,
adjectives, adverbs, and conjunctions, as
well as many more nouns, are mastered.
Fast-mapping- The speedy and
sometimes imprecise way in which
children learn new words by tentatively
placing them in mental categories
according to their perceived meaning.
Basic Grammar
The grammar of a language includes the
structures, techniques, and rules that
communicate meaning. Word order and word
repetition, prefixes and suffixes, intonation
and emphasisall are part of grammar.
Overregularization- The application of rules
of grammar even when exceptions occur,
making the language seem more regular"
than it actually is.
Early Childhood Education
Child-Centered Programs
Stress childrens natural inclination to learn through play
rather than by following adult directions.
Encourage self-paced exploration and artistic
Show the influence of Vygotsky, who thought that
children learn through play with other children and
through cultural practices that structure life.
Montessori schools emphasize individual pride and
accomplishment, presenting literacy-related tasks (such
as outlining letters and looking at books).
Reggio Emilia approach- A famous program of early-
childhood education that originated in the town of Reggio
Emilia, Italy; it encourages each childs creativity in a
carefully designed setting.
Early Childhood Education
Teacher-Directed Programs
Stress academic subjects taught by a teacher
to an entire class.
Children learn letters, numbers, shapes, and
colors, as well as how to listen to the teacher
and sit quietly.
Make a clear distinction between work and
Are much less expensive, since the child/
adult ratio can be higher.
Early Childhood Education
Intervention Programs
Project Head Start- The most widespread
early-childhood education program in the
United States, begun in 1965 and funded
by the federal government.
At first, the program was thought to be
highly successful at raising childrens
intelligence; ten years later, early gains
were said to fade.
Injuries and Maltreatment
Accidents are the leading cause of death
worldwide for people under age 40.
Among 2- to 6-year-olds in the United States,
four times more children die in accidents than
die of cancer, which is the second most
common cause of death.
Injury control/harm reduction- Practices
that are aimed anticipating, controlling, and
preventing dangerous activities.
Injuries and Maltreatment
Primary prevention- Actions that change overall
background conditions to prevent some unwanted
event or circumstance, such as injury, disease, or
Secondary prevention- Actions that avert harm in a
high-risk situation, such as stopping a car before it hits
a pedestrian or installing traffic lights at dangerous
Tertiary prevention- Actions, such as immediate and
effective medical treatment, that are taken after an
adverse event (such as illness, injury, or abuse)
occurs and that are aimed at reducing the harm or
preventing disability.
Injuries and Maltreatment
Child maltreatment
Intentional harm to or avoidable endangerment of
anyone under 18 years of age.
Child abuse
Deliberate action that is harmful to a childs
physical, emotional, or sexual well-being.
Child neglect
Failure to meet a childs basic physical,
educational, or emotional needs.
Injuries and Maltreatment
Injuries and Maltreatment
Consequences of Maltreatment
Severely maltreated children suffer
physiologically, academically, and socially in
every culture.
The worst consequence is that maltreated
children come to consider other people to be
hostile and exploitative. That belief makes
them fearful, aggressive, and lonely.
The earlier their abuse starts and the longer it
continues, the more trouble they have with
peers and adults.
Injuries and Maltreatment
Three Levels of Prevention Again
Primary prevention includes any measure that
reduces financial stress, family isolation, and
unwanted parenthood.
Secondary prevention may include home visits
by nurses, high-quality day care, and preventive
social workall designed to help high-risk
Tertiary prevention reduces harm when
maltreatment has already occurred. Requires
permanency planning, an effort to find a long-
term solution to the problem.
Injuries and Maltreatment
Foster care- A legal, publicly supported
system in which a maltreated child is
removed from the parents custody and
entrusted to another adult or family, which
is reimbursed for expenses incurred in
meeting the childs needs.
Kinship care- A form of foster care in
which a relative of a maltreated child,
usually a grand -parent, becomes the
approved caregiver.
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 6 Early Childhood:
Psychosocial Development
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
Emotional Development
Emotional Regulation
The ability to control when and how emotions are
Possible due to connections between limbic system
and prefrontal cortex
Initiative versus guilt
Eriksons third psychosocial crisis, in which
children undertake new skills and activities
and feel guilty when they do not succeed at
Pride in Oneself
Self-esteem: A persons evaluation of his or her own
worth, either in specifics (e.g., intelligence,
attractiveness) or in general.
Self-concept: A persons understanding of who he or
she is, incorporating self-esteem, physical appearance,
personality, and various personal traits (e.g. gender,
Protective Optimism: Preschoolers predict that they
can solve impossible puzzles, remember long lists of
words, and control their dreams.
Helps them try new things
Guilt and Shame
Guilt: Self-blame that people experience
when they do something wrong
Shame: Peoples feeling that others blame
them, disapprove of them, or are
disappointed in them
Intrinsic motivation: A drive, or reason to
pursue a goal, that comes from inside a person
(e.g. the need to feel smart or competent).
Extrinsic motivation: A drive, or reason to
pursue a goal, that arises from the need to have
ones achievements rewarded from outside (e.g.
by receiving material possessions or another
persons esteem).
Culture and Motives
Goals for emotional regulation that seem
to be important in certain cultures:
Overcome fear (United States)
Modify anger (Puerto Rico)
Temper pride (China)
Control aggression (Japan)
Be patient and cooperative (Native American
Seeking Emotional Balance
Lack of emotional regulation may be an early
sign of psychopathology
Externalizing problems
Involves expressing powerful feelings through
uncontrolled physical or verbal outbursts, as by
lashing out at other people or breaking things
Intenalizing problems
Involves turning ones emotional distress inward, as
by feeling excessively guilty, ashamed, or worthless
Sex Differences in Emotional
Neurological and hormonal
Boys tend to be aggressive
Girls tend to be anxious
Psychopathology is not typical!
Children of both sexes usually
learn to regulate their emotions
as their brains mature and their
parents nurture them
Play is the most productive and enjoyable
activity that children undertake
Play is universal
Archeologists find toys that are many
thousands of years old
Anthropologists report play in every part of the
Form of play changes with age and culture
Increasingly complex social play is due to
brain maturation coupled with many hours of
social play
Children must learn how to make, and keep,
Peers and Parents
People of about the same age and social
Provide practice in emotional regulation,
empathy, and social understanding
Children usually prefer to play with each other
rather than with their parents
The Ecological Context
Physical setting of a culture shapes play
Some communities provide many toys and
close supervision
Others leave children to play on their own with
whatever they find
Child-centered programs in the United
Changing Social Circumstances
Types of Play (Midred Parten, 1932)
1. Solitary play: A child plays alone, unaware of any other
children playing nearby.
2. Onlooker play: A child watches other children play.
3. Parallel play: Children play with similar toys in similar
ways, but not together.
4. Associative play: Children interact, observing each
other and sharing material, but their play is not yet
mutual and reciprocal.
5. Cooperative play: Children play together, creating and
elaborating a joint activity or taking turns.
Active Play
Rough-and-tumble play: Play that mimics
aggression through wrestling, chasing, or hitting,
but in which there is no intent to harm.
Expressions and gestures (e.g. play face) signifying
that the child is "just pretending
Particularly common among young males
Ample space, distant adults, and presence of friends
increase likelihood
Advances childrens social understanding but
increases likelihood of injury
May positively affect prefrontal cortex development
Active Play
Sociodramatic play: Pretend play in which
children act out various roles and themes in
stories that they create.
Sociodramatic play enables children to:
Explore and rehearse the social roles enacted around
Test their ability to explain and to convince playmates
of their ideas
Practice regulating their emotions by pretending to be
afraid, angry, brave, and so on
Develop a self-concept in a nonthreatening context
Sociodramatic Play
Parenting Styles
Diana Baumrind (1967, 1971). Parents differ on
four important dimensions:
1. Expressions of warmth: From very affectionate to cold
and critical
2. Strategies for discipline: Parents vary in whether and
how they explain, criticize, persuade, ignore, and punish.
3. Communication: Some parents listen patiently to their
children; others demand silence.
4. Expectations for maturity: Parents vary in the
standards they set for their children regarding
responsibility and self-control.
Baumrinds Patterns of
Authoritarian parenting: High behavioral standards,
strict punishment of misconduct, and little communication
Permissive parenting: High nurturance and
communication but little discipline, guidance, or control
Authoritative parenting: Parents set limits and enforce
rules but are flexible and listen to their children
Neglectful/uninvolved parenting: Parents are
indifferent toward their children and unaware of what is
going on in their childrens lives
Implications of Parenting Style
Children of authoritarian parents tend to
become conscientious, obedient, and quiet but not
especially happy
feel guilty or depressed and blame themselves when
things dont go well
rebel as adolescents and leave home before age 20
Children of permissive parents tend to:
be unhappy and lack self-control, especially in peer
suffer from inadequate emotional regulation
be immature and lack friendships (main reason for
their unhappiness)
continue to live at home, still dependent, in early
Implications of Parenting Style
Children of authoritative parents tend to:
be successful, articulate, happy with themselves, and
generous with others
Be well-liked by teachers and peers, especially in
societies in which individual initiative is valued
Implications of Parenting Style
Critique of Baumrinds Model
Her original sample had little economic, ethnic, or
cultural diversity.
She focused more on attitudes than on daily interactions.
Some authoritarian parents are very loving toward their
Some permissive parents guide their children intensely,
but with words, not rules.
She overlooked the childs contribution to the parent-
child relationship.
Children, Parents, and the
The Significance of Content
Violence on TV is often depicted as morally
Children who watch televised violence become
more violent themselves.
Racial and gender stereotypes are still evident in
childrens programs.
Educational television may have positive effects.
Experts recommend that parents limit their
young childrens television viewing and spend
more time talking and playing with them.
Moral Development
Empathy: The ability to understand the
emotions and concerns of another person,
especially when they differ from ones
Antipathy: Feelings of dislike or even
hatred for another person.
Prosocial and Antisocial
Prosocial behavior: Actions that are
helpful and kind but that are of no obvious
benefit to the person doing them.
Increases from age 3 to 6
Antisocial behavior: Actions that are
deliberately hurtful or destructive to
another person.
Declines beginning at age 2
Types of Aggression
1. Instrumental aggression: Hurtful behavior that is
intended to get something that another person has and
to keep it.
2. Reactive aggression: An impulsive retaliation for
another persons intentional or accidental action, verbal
or physical.
3. Relational aggression: Nonphysical acts, such as
insults or social rejection, aimed at harming the social
connection between the victim and other people.
4. Bullying aggression: Unprovoked, repeated physical
or verbal attack, especially on victims who are unlikely
to defend themselves.
Discipline and Childrens
1. Remember theory of mind. Young children gradually
come to understand things from other viewpoints.
2. Remember emerging self-concept. When the sense of
self is developing, sharing becomes more difficult.
3. Remember fast-mapping. Young children are eager to
talk and think, but they say more than they really
understand. Explanations and discussion before and
after misbehavior help children learn.
4. Remember that young children are not logical. Children
may disconnect a misdeed from the punishment.
Physical Punishment
Some researchers believe that
physical punishment is harmless;
some dont.
Physical punishment increases
obedience temporarily, but
increases the possibility of later
Many children who are spanked do
not become violent adults; other
factors (e.g. poverty, temperament)
are stronger influences.
Other Forms of Punishment
Psychological control: A disciplinary
technique that involves threatening to
withdraw love and support and that relies
on a childs feelings of guilt and gratitude
to the parents.
Time-out: A disciplinary technique in
which a child is separated from other
people and activities for a specified time.
Becoming Boys and Girls
Age 2: Children know
whether they are boys or
girls and apply gender
labels consistently
Age 4: Children are
convinced that certain toys
(such as dolls or trucks) are
appropriate for one gender
but not the other
Sex and Gender
Sex differences: Biological differences between males
and females, in organs, hormones, and body shape.
Gender differences: Differences in the roles and
behaviors that are prescribed by a culture for males and
Initial confusion about gender and sex
Age 5: Increased awareness of sex and gender differences
Age 8: Belief that their biological sex is a permanent trait
Increase of awareness of sex differences, preferences for
same-sex playmates and stereotypical gender activities
from age 2 to age 8
Theories of Gender Differences
Psychoanalytical Theory
Phallic stage: Freuds third stage of
development, when the penis becomes the
focus of concern and pleasure.
Oedipus complex: The unconscious desire of
young boys to replace their fathers and win their
mothers exclusive love.
Superego: In psychoanalytic theory, the
judgmental part of the personality that
internalizes the moral standards of the parents.
Electra complex: The unconscious desire
of girls to replace their mothers and win
their fathers exclusive love.
Identification: An attempt to defend ones
self-concept by taking on the behaviors
and attitudes of someone else.
Theories of Gender Differences
Gender differences are the product of
ongoing reinforcement and punishment
"Gender-appropriate" is rewarded more
frequently than "gender-inappropriate"
Social learning theory: Children notice
the ways men and women behave and
internalize the standards they observe
Theories of Gender Differences
Cognitive Theory
Gender schema: A childs cognitive
concept or general belief about sex
differences, which is based on his or her
observations and experiences.
Young children categorize themselves and
everyone else as either male or female, and
then they think and behave accordingly.
Systems Theory
Offers the most complex and
comprehensive explanations for gender
Genes and culture, parents and peers, ideas
and customs all interact, affecting each child.
Androgyny: A balance within one person
of traditionally masculine and feminine
psychological characteristics.
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 7- Middle Childhood
Body and Mind
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
A Healthy Time
The average 7- to 11-year-old gains about
2 inches (5 centimeters) and 5 pounds
(2.2 kilograms) per year.
Healthy 7-year-olds tend to be agile and
neither too heavy nor too thin.
After age 6, the rate of muscle growth
slows. Children master any motor skills
that dont require adult-sized bodies.
A Healthy Time
A chronic disease of the respiratory system in
which inflammation narrows the airways from the
nose and mouth to the lungs, causing difficulty in
breathing. Signs and symptoms include wheezing,
shortness of breath, chest tightness, and
Some experts suggest a hygiene hypothesis for
the current increase in all allergies, from peanuts
(an allergen for about 1 percent of U.S. children)
to cockroach droppings (a trigger for asthma).
A Healthy Time
Many 7- to 11-year-olds eat too much, exercise too little, and
become overweight or obese as a result.
Body mass index (BMI)- The ratio of weight to height,
calculated by dividing a persons body weight in kilograms by
the square of his or her height in meters.
Overweight- In an adult, having a BMI of 25 to 29. In a child,
having a BMI above the 85
percentile, according to the U.S.
Centers for Disease Controls 1980 standards for children of a
given age.
Obesity- In an adult, having a BMI of 30 or more. In a child,
having a BMI above the 95
percentile, according to the U.S.
Centers for Disease Controls 1980 standards for children of a
given age.
A Healthy Time
A Healthy Time
Physical Activity
Better overall health, including less asthma
Less obesity
Appreciation of cooperation and fair play
Improved problem-solving ability
Respect for teammates and opponents of
many ethnicities and nationalities
A Healthy Time
But there are hazards as well:
Loss of self-esteem because of critical
teammates or coaches.
Injuries (the infamous "Little League
elbow" is one example).
Prejudice (especially against the other
Increases in stress (evidenced by altered
hormone levels, insomnia.
Theories About Cognition
Piaget and School-Age Children
Concrete operational thought- Piagets
term for the ability to reason logically about
direct experiences and perceptions.
Classification- The logical principle that
things can be organized into groups (or
categories or classes) according to some
characteristic they have in common.
Transitive inference- The ability to figure out
(infer) the unspoken link (transfer) between
one fact and another.
Theories About Cognition
Seriation- The idea that things can be arranged in
a series. Seriation is crucial for understanding the
number sequence.
Contemporary developmentalists find that, in
some ways, Piaget was mistaken. The research
does not confirm a sudden shift between
preoperational and concrete operational thought.
What develops during middle childhood is the
ability to use mental categories and subcategories
flexibly, inductively, and simultaneously.
Theories About Cognition
Vygotsky and School Age Children
Whereas Piaget emphasized the childs discovery,
Vygotsky regarded instruction as essential.
In guiding each child through his or her zone of
proximal development, or almost-understood
ideas, other people are crucial.
Children are "apprentices in learning" as they
play with each other, watch television, eat dinner
with their families, and engage in other daily
Language is integral as a mediator, a vehicle for
understanding and learning.
Theories About Cognition
Information-processing theory
A perspective that compares human thinking processes,
by analogy, to computer analysis of data, including
sensory input, connections, stored memories, and
Selective attention- The ability to concentrate on some
stimuli while ignoring others.
Automatization- A process in which repetition of a
sequence of thoughts and actions makes the sequence
routine, so that it no longer requires conscious thought.
Reaction time- The time it takes to respond to a
stimulus, either physically (with a reflexive movement
such as an eye blink) or cognitively (with a thought).
Theories About Cognition
Sensory memory- The component of the
information processing system in which incoming
stimulus information is stored for a split second to
allow it to be processed. (Also called the sensory
Working memory- The component of the
information processing system in which current,
conscious mental activity occurs. (Also called short-
term memory.)
Long-term memory- The component of the
information processing system in which virtually
limitless amounts of information can be stored
Theories About Cognition
Working memory improves steadily and
significantly every year from age 4 to 15 years.
The capacity of long-term memory is virtually
limitless by the end of middle childhood.
Memory storage (how much information is
deposited in the brain) expands over childhood,
but more important is retrieval (how readily stored
material can be brought into working memory).
As the prefrontal cortex matures, children are
better able to use strategies to help them
Retrieval becomes more efficient and accurate.
Theories About Cognition
Metacognition- "Thinking about thinking";
the ability to evaluate a cognitive task in
order to determine how best to accomplish
it, and then to monitor and adjust ones
performance on that task.
Metamemory- The ability to understand
how memory works in order to use it well.
Metamemory is an essential element of
Learning in School
Teaching Values
In some nations, every public school teaches religion.
In the United States, most children who attend private
school (10 percent) or who are home-schooled (2
percent) learn specific religious content.
Among the other specifics taught in some schools are
evolution and sex education, both ideas that most
Americans want children to learn but some parents do
Hidden curriculum- The unofficial, unstated, or
implicit rules and priorities that influence the academic
curriculum and every other aspect of learning in
Learning in School
Learning Language
By age 6, children know most of the basic
vocabulary and grammar of their first
language, and many speak a second or
even a third language.
Some school-age children learn as many
as 20 new words a day and apply
grammar rules they did not use before.
Learning in School
Directly related to language learning is another
capacity of the school-age child, the ability to switch
from one manner of speaking, or language code, to
Each language code differs in tone, pronunciation,
gesture, sentence length, idiom, grammar, and
Sometimes people switch from the formal code (used
in academic contexts) to the informal code (used with
Many children use a third code in text messaging, with
numbers (411), abbreviations (LOL), and emoticons
Learning in School
Learning Language
Should immigrant children be required to speak only
Standard English in school right from the beginning, or
should they be educated in their native language in the
early grades?
English-language learner (ELL)- A child who is
learning English as a second language.
In the United States, some school districts offer
bilingual education (teaching in two languages); others
provide ESL (English as a second language)
instruction; and others offer only immersion, in which
children are taught exclusively in a language that is
not spoken at home.
Learning in School
The Reading Wars
Phonics approach- Teaching reading by first
teaching the sounds of each letter and of
various letter combinations.
Whole-language approach- Teaching
reading by encouraging early use of all
language skills-talking and listening, reading
and writing.
A focus on phonics need not undercut
instruction that motivates children to read,
write, and discuss with their classmates and
their parents.
Learning in School
The Math Wars
Historically, math was taught by rote; children
memorized number facts, such as the
multiplication tables, and filled page after
page of workbooks.
In reaction against this approach, many
educators, inspired especially by Piaget and
Vygotsky, sought to make math instruction
more active and engaging- less a matter of
memorization than of discovery.
Measuring the Mind
Aptitude- The potential to master a specific
skill or to learn a certain body of knowledge.
IQ test- A test designed to measure
intellectual aptitude, or ability to learn in
school. Originally, intelligence was defined as
mental age divided by chronological age,
times 100--hence the term intelligence
quotient, or IQ.
Achievement test- A measure of mastery or
proficiency in reading, mathematics, writing,
science, or some other subject.
Measuring the Mind
Measuring Aptitude
The most important aptitude for school-age children is
intellectual aptitude, or the ability to learn in school, which
is usually measured by an IQ test.
Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC)- An IQ
test designed for school-age children. The test assesses
potential in many areas, including vocabulary, general
knowledge, memory, and spatial comprehension.
Flynn effect - The rise in average IQ scores that has
occurred over the decades in many nations.
Mental retardation- Literally, slow, or late, thinking. In
practice, people are considered mentally retarded if they
score below 70 on an IQ test and if they are markedly
behind their peers in the ability to meet the basic
requirements of daily life.
Measuring the Mind
Measuring Achievement Within the United
No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act- A U.S. law
enacted in 2001 that was intended to increase
accountability in education by requiring states to
qualify for federal educational funding by
administering standardized tests to measure
school achievement.
National Assessment of Educational Progress
(NAEP)- An ongoing and nationally representative
measure of U.S. childrens achievement in
reading, mathematics, and other subjects over
time; nicknamed "the nations report card."
Measuring the Mind
International Achievement Test Scores
Literacy Study (PIRLS)- Inaugurated in 2001, a
planned five-year cycle of international trend studies in
the reading ability of fourth-graders.
Trends in Math and Science Study
(TIMSS)- An international assessment of the math and
science skills of fourth- and eighth-graders. Although the
TIMSS is very useful, different countries scores are not
always comparable because sample selection, test
administration, and content validity are hard to keep
Measuring the Mind
Developmental Psychopathology
The field that uses insights into typical
development to understand and remediate
developmental disorders, and vice versa.
Children with special needs- Children who,
because of a physical or mental disability,
require extra help in order to learn.
Education of children with special needs is
most beneficial when it begins early; but
availability of programs varies within and
among nations.
Measuring the Mind
Measuring the Mind
Several lessons from developmental
psychopathology apply to everyone:
1. Abnormality is normal. Most people
sometimes act oddly, and those with
serious disabilities are, in many respects,
like everyone else.
2. Disability changes year by year:
Someone who is severely disabled at one
stage may become quite capable later on,
or vice versa.
Measuring the Mind
3. Adulthood may be better or worse than
childhood. Prognosis is difficult. Many infants and
children with serious disabilities that affect them
psychologically (e.g., blindness) become happy
and productive adults. Conversely, some
conditions become more disabling at maturity,
when interpersonal skills become more important.
4. Diagnosis depends on the social context.
According to the widely used Diagnostic and
Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-
TR), "nuances of an individuals cultural frame of
reference" must be considered before a diagnosis
is rendered(American Psychiatric Association,
2000, p. xxxiv).
Measuring the Mind
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of
Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR)
The American Psychiatric Associations
official guide to the diagnosis (not
treatment) of mental disorders. (IV-TR
means "fourth edition, text revision).
The fifth edition is scheduled to be
published in 2011.
Measuring the Mind
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
(ADHD)- A condition in which a person is
inattentive, impulsive, and overactive and
thus has great difficulty concentrating for
more than a few moments.
Comorbidity- The presence of two or
more unrelated disease conditions at the
same time in the same person.
Measuring the Mind
Learning disability- A marked delay in a
particular area of learning that is not
caused by an apparent physical disability,
by mental retardation, or by an unusually
stressful home environment.
Dyslexia- Unusual difficulty with reading;
thought to be the result of some
neurological underdevelopment.
Measuring the Mind
Autistic spectrum disorder- Any of several
disorders characterized by impaired
communication, inadequate social skills, and
unusual patterns of play.
Autism- A developmental disorder marked
by an inability to relate to other people
normally, extreme self-absorption, and an
inability to acquire normal speech.
Asperger syndrome- An autistic spectrum
disorder characterized by extreme attention
to details and deficient social understanding.
Measuring the Mind
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 8 Middle Childhood:
Psychosocial Development
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
The Nature of the Child
Industry and Inferiority
Industrious children at this
age actively master culturally
valued skills and abilities (e.g.
reading, math, collecting,
categorizing, counting)
Children work on regulating
their temper
Effortful control: The ability to
regulate ones emotions and
actions through effort, not
simply through natural
Erikson on the School-Age Child
Industry versus inferiority
The fourth of Eriksons eight psychosocial
Children attempt to master many skills,
developing a sense of themselves as either
industrious or inferior, competent or
Freud on Latency
Emotional drives are quiet and unconscious
sexual conflicts are submerged.
Children acquire cognitive skills and
assimilate cultural values by expanding their
world to include teachers, neighbors, peers,
club leaders, and coaches.
Sexual energy is channeled into social
Social comparison: Tendency to assess ones
abilities, achievements, social status, and other
attributes by measuring them against those of
other people, especially ones peers.
Helps children value the abilities they have and
abandon the imaginary, rosy self-evaluation of
Confidence plummets and inhibition rises from about
18 months of age to 9 years
Materialism rises
Resilience and Stress
Resilience: The capacity to adapt well despite
significant adversity and to overcome serious
1. Resilience is dynamic - a person may be resilient at
some periods but not at others.
2. Resilience is a positive adaptation to stress - if rejection
by a parent leads a child to establish a closer
relationship with another adult, that child is resilient.
3. Adversity must be significant - Resilient children
overcome conditions that overwhelm many of their
Cumulative Stress
Gathering Strengths
Childs working model
Developing friends, activities, and skills
School success and after-school activities
Community, church, and government
Easygoing temperament and high IQ
Social Support and Religious
A network of supportive relatives is a
better buffer than having only one close
Grandparents, teachers, unrelated adults,
peers, and pets can lower stress.
Community institutions (e.g. churches,
libraries) can also be crucial sources of
social support.
Families and Children
Shared and Nonshared Environments:
Genes affect half or more of the variance
for almost every trait
Influence of shared environment (e.g.,
children raised by the same parents in the
same home) shrinks with age
Effect of nonshared environment (e.g.,
friends or schools) increases
Children raised in the same households by
the same parents do not necessarily share
the same home environment.
Changes in the family affect every family
member differently (e.g. depending on age
and/or gender).
Most parents respond to each of their
children differently.
Families and Children
Family Function
Family function: The way a family works
to meet the needs of its members.
Children need families to:
1. provide basic material necessities
2. encourage learning
3. help them develop self-respect
4. nurture friendships
5. foster harmony and stability
Family Structure
Family structure: The legal and genetic
relationships among relatives living in the
same home; includes nuclear family,
extended family, stepfamily, and so on.
Household: Composed of people who live
together in the same home
Two or more people who are related to one another
(most common)
One person living alone (26%)
Nonrelatives living together (6%)
Family household: Includes a least one parent
and at least one child under age 18
Accounts for about two-thirds of the
households in the United States
Two-Parent Families
Nuclear family: A family that consists of a
father, a mother, and their biological
children under age 18.
Tend to be wealthier, better educated,
healthier, more flexible, and less hostile
Biological parents tend to be very dedicated to
their offspring
Similar advantages occur for children who are
Families Headed by Gay Men or
Lesbian Women
Make up less than 1% of all U.S. households
Many have children (from previous marriage, assisted
reproduction or adoption)
Strengths and weaknesses are similar to those of the
heterosexual family
Children of homosexual parents have the same romantic
impulses, school achievements, and psychosocial
difficulties as children of heterosexual couples
The quality of childrens relationships with their parents is
more important than the parents sexual interactions, the
family structure, or the household status
Stepparent must find a role that is not as
intimate as that of the biological parents but that
allows some involvement with the children.
Easier if the children are young (under age 3)
Difficult if the children are teenagers
Blended family: A stepparent family that
includes children born to several families, such
as the biological children from the spouses
previous marriages and the biological children of
the new couple.
Single-Parent Families
Single-parent family: A family that consists of
only one parent and his or her children under
age 18.
Children in single-mother families fare worse in school
and in adult life than most other children.
Single-mother households are often low-income and
unstable, move more often and add new adults more
Single-fathers have a slightly higher income and tend
to be slightly older than single mothers.
Many Relatives at Home
Extended family: A family consisting of
parents, their children, and other relatives
living in one household.
Polygamous family: A family consisting
of one man, several wives, and the
biological children of the man and his
Cultural Differences in Family
Family Trouble
Dysfunctional family: A family that does
not support all its members
Three factors increase the likelihood of
1. Low Income
2. Instability
3. Low Harmony
Low Income
Family stress model: the crucial question
to ask about any risk factor (e.g. poverty,
divorce, job loss, eviction) is whether or
not it increases the stress on a family
The family-stress model contends that the
adults stressful reaction to poverty is crucial
in determining the effect on the children.
Children in middle childhood prefer
Upsetting changes include moving to a new
home, being sent to a new school, and
changes in the family structure
Adults might not realize that these transitions
affect schoolchildren
Children feel a need for harmony
Parents who habitually fight are more likely to
divorce, move, and otherwise disrupt the
childs life.
Remarriage of divorced parents is often
difficult for children due to jealousy, stress,
and conflict.
Children frequently suffer if parents physically
or verbally abuse each other.
The Peer Group
Culture of children: The particular habits,
styles, and values that reflect the set of
rules and rituals that characterize children
as distinct from adult society.
Peer culture
School-age children value personal friendship
more than peer acceptance.
Gender differences
Girls talk more and share secrets.
Boys play more active games.
Friendships lead to psychosocial growth and
provide a buffer against psychopathology.
Older children:
Demand more of their friends
Change friends less often
Become more upset when a friendship
Find it harder to make new friends
Seek friends who share their interests and
Social Awareness
Social cognition: The ability to understand
social interactions, including the causes and
consequences of human behavior.
Begins in infancy and continues to develop in early
Social cognition is well established by middle
Children with impaired social cognition are likely to be
Rejected Children
Aggressive-rejected children: Children
who are disliked by peers because of
antagonistic, confrontational behavior
Withdrawn-rejected children: Children
who are disliked by peers because of their
timid, withdrawn, and anxious behavior
Bullies and Victims
Bullying: Repeated, systematic efforts to
inflict harm through physical, verbal, or
social attack on a weaker person.
Bully-victim: Someone who attacks
others and who is attacked as well
Also called a provocative victim because he or
she does things that elicit bullying, such as
stealing a bullys pencil
Successful Efforts to Eliminate
The whole school must
be involved, not just the
identified bullies.
Intervention is more
effective in the earlier
Evaluation of results is
Morality in Middle Childhood
Lawrence Kohlberg (1963): Described stages of
morality that stem from three levels of moral
reasoning, with two stages at each level
1.Preconventional moral reasoning:
Emphasizes rewards and punishments
2.Conventional moral reasoning: Emphasizes
social rules
3.Postconventional moral reasoning:
Emphasizing moral principles
Criticisms of Kohlberg
Kohlberg ignored culture and gender.
Kohlbergs levels could be labeled personal
(preconventional), communal (conventional), and
worldwide (postconventional) ! family is not
The participants in Kohlbergs original research
were all boys.
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 9- Adolescence
Body and Mind
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
The time between the first onrush of
hormones and full adult physical
Puberty usually lasts three to five years.
Many more years are required to achieve
psychosocial maturity.
Menarche- A girls first menstrual period,
signaling that she has begun ovulation.
Pregnancy is biologically possible, but
ovulation and menstruation are often
irregular for years after menarche.
Spermarche- A boys first ejaculation of
sperm. Erections can occur as early as
infancy, but ejaculation signals sperm
Puberty Begins
An organic chemical substance that is
produced by one body tissue and conveyed
via the bloodstream to another to affect some
physiological function.
Various hormones influence thoughts, urges,
emotions, and behavior.
Puberty Begins
Pituitary gland
A gland in the brain that responds to a signal
from the hypothalamus by producing many
hormones, including those that regulate
growth and control other glands, among them
the adrenal and sex glands.
Puberty Begins
Adrenal glands-Two glands, located above
the kidneys, that produce hormones
(including the stress hormones
epinephrine [adrenaline] and
HPA (hypothalamuspituitaryadrenal)
axis- The sequence of a chain reaction of
hormone production, originating in the
hypothalamus and moving to the pituitary
and then to the adrenal glands.
Puberty Begins
Gonads- The paired sex glands (ovaries in
females, testicles in males). The gonads
produce hormones and gametes.
Estradiol- A sex hormone, considered the chief
estrogen. Females produce more estradiol than
males do.
Testosterone- A sex hormone, the best known
of the androgens (male hormones). Secreted in
far greater amounts by males than by females.
Puberty Begins
Puberty Begins
Influences on the Age of Puberty
Age 11 or 12 is the most likely age of visible
The rise in hormone levels that signals
puberty is still considered normal in those as
young as age 8 or as old as age 14.
Precocious puberty (sexual development
before age 8) occurs about once in 5,000
children, for unknown reasons.
Puberty Begins
About two-thirds of the variation in age of
puberty is genetic.
Genes on the sex chromosomes have a
marked effect on age of puberty. Girls
generally develop ahead of boys.
Children who have a relatively large
proportion of body fat experience puberty
sooner than do their thin contemporaries.
Puberty Begins
Leptin- A hormone that affects appetite and is
believed to be involved in the onset of puberty.
Leptin levels increase during childhood and
peak at around age 12.
In both sexes, chronic malnutrition delays
Puberty Begins
Data on puberty over the centuries reveals a
dramatic example of a long-term statistical
increase or decrease called a secular trend.
Each generation has experienced puberty a
few weeks earlier, and has grown a
centimeter or so taller, than did the preceding
The secular trend has stopped in developed
Puberty Begins
Too Early, Too Late
Early-maturing girls tend to have lower self-
esteem, more depression, and poorer body
image than later-maturing girls.
Early-maturing boys are more aggressive,
lawbreaking, and alcohol-abusing than later-
maturing boys.
Slow developing boys tend to be more
anxious, depressed, and afraid of sex.
Puberty Begins
Many adolescents are deficient in their intake
of necessary vitamins or minerals.
Deficiencies of iron, calcium, zinc, and other
minerals may be even more problematic
during adolescence than vitamin deficiencies,
since minerals are needed for bone and
muscle growth.
Nutritional deficiencies result from the food
choices that young adolescents are allowed,
even enticed, to make.
Puberty Begins
Body image
A persons idea of how his or her body looks.
Another reason for poor nutrition is anxiety
about body image.
Girls diet partly because boys tend to prefer to
date thin girls.
Boys want to look taller and stronger, a
concern that increases from ages 12 to 17,
partly because girls value well-developed
muscles in males.
Puberty Begins
Eating Disorders
anorexia nervosa- An eating disorder
characterized by self-starvation. Affected
individuals voluntarily under eat and often
over exercise, depriving their vital organs of
nutrition. Anorexia can be fatal.
bulimia nervosa- An eating disorder
characterized by binge eating and subsequent
purging, usually by induced vomiting and/or
use of laxatives.
The Transformations of Puberty
Bigger and Stronger
Growth spurt
The relatively sudden and rapid physical
growth that occurs during puberty.
Each body part increases in size on a
schedule: A weight increase usually precedes
a height increase, and growth of the limbs
precedes growth of the torso.
A height spurt follows the increase in body fat,
and then a muscle spurt occurs.
The Transformations of Puberty
Sexual Maturation
Primary sex characteristics-The parts of the
body that are directly involved in reproduction,
including the vagina, uterus, ovaries, testicles,
and penis.
Secondary sex characteristics- Physical
traits that are not directly involved in
reproduction but that indicate sexual maturity,
such as a mans beard and a womans
The Transformations of Puberty
The primary and secondary sex
characteristics just described are not the only
manifestations of the sexual hormones.
Fantasizing, flirting, handholding, staring,
displaying, and touching all reflect gender,
availability, and culture.
Hormones trigger thoughts and emotions, and
the social context shapes thoughts.
The Transformations of Puberty
Compared to 100 years ago, adolescent
sexual development is more hazardous,
for five reasons:
1. Earlier puberty and weaker social taboos
mean teens have sexual experiences at
younger ages. Early sex correlates with
depression and drug abuse.
2. Most contemporary teenage mothers have no
husbands to help them, whereas many
teenage mothers a century ago were married.
The Transformations of Puberty
3. Raising a child has become more complex
and expensive.
4. Mothers of teenagers are often employed and
therefore less available as caregivers for their
teenagers child.
5. Sexually transmitted infections are more
widespread and dangerous.
The Transformations of Puberty
Teenage births in the past 50 years have
decreased markedly.
The Transformations of Puberty
sexually transmitted infection (STI)
A disease spread by sexual contact, including
syphilis, gonorrhea, genital herpes,
chlamydia, and HIV.
child sexual abuse
Any erotic activity that arouses an adult and
excites, shames, or confuses a child, whether
or not the victim protests and whether or not
genital contact is involved.
Cognitive Development
Neurological Development
Different parts of the brain grow at
different rates:
The limbic system (fear, emotional impulses)
matures before the prefrontal cortex (planning
ahead, emotional regulation).
That means the instinctual and emotional
areas develop before the reflective ones do.
Cognitive Development
When emotions are intense, especially when
one is with peers, the logical part of the brain
shuts down.
When stress, arousal, passion, sensory
bombardment, drug intoxication, or
deprivation is extreme, the adolescent brain is
overtaken by impulses that might shame
Cognitive Development
Several aspects of adolescent brain
development are positive:
increased mylenation, which decreases
reaction time
enhanced dopamine activity, promoting
pleasurable experiences
synaptic growth enhances moral development
and openness to new experiences and ideas
Cognitive Development
Thinking About Oneself
adolescent egocentrism
A characteristic of adolescent thinking that leads
young people (ages 10 to 14) to focus on themselves
to the exclusion of others.
personal fable
An aspect of adolescent egocentrism characterized
by an adolescents belief that his or her thoughts,
feelings, or experiences are unique, more wonderful
or awful than anyone elses.
Cognitive Development
invincibility fable
An adolescents egocentric conviction that he or she
cannot be overcome or even harmed by anything that
might defeat a normal mortal, such as unprotected
sex, drug abuse, or high-speed driving.
imaginary audience
The other people who, in an adolescents egocentric
belief, are watching and taking note of his or her
appearance, ideas, and behavior. This belief makes
many teenagers self-conscious.
Cognitive Development
Formal Operational Thought
In Piagets theory, the fourth and final stage of
cognitive development, characterized by more
systematic logic and the ability to think about
abstract ideas.
Hypothetical thought
Reasoning that includes propositions and
possibilities that may not reflect reality.
Cognitive Development
Deductive reasoning
Reasoning from a general statement,
premise, or principle, through logical steps, to
figure out (deduce) specifics. (Sometimes
called top-down reasoning.)
Inductive reasoning
Reasoning from one or more specific
experiences or facts to a general conclusion;
may be less cognitively advanced than
deduction. (Sometimes called bottom-up
Cognitive Development
Cognitive Development
Intuitive, Emotional Thought
Adolescents find it much easier and quicker to
forget about logic and follow their impulses.
Dual-process model
The notion that two networks exist within the
human brain, one for emotional and one for
analytical processing of stimuli.
Cognitive Development
Intuitive thought
Thought that arises from an emotion or a
hunch, beyond rational explanation, and is
influenced by past experiences and cultural
Analytic thought
Thought that results from analysis, such as a
systematic ranking of pros and cons, risks and
consequences, possibilities and facts. Analytic
thought depends on logic and rationality.
Teaching and Learning
Secondary education
The period after primary education (elementary or
grade school) and before tertiary education (college).
It usually occurs from about age 12 to age 18,
although the age range varies somewhat by school
and by nation.
Middle School
A school for children in the grades between
elementary and high school. Middle school usually
begins with grade 5 or 6 and ends with grade 8.
Teaching and Learning
Electronic Technology and Cognition
Digital divide- The gap between students who
have access to computers and those who do not,
often a gap between rich and poor. In the United
States and most developed nations, this gap has now
been bridged due to the prevalence of computers in
The Internet and other forms of electronic technology
can accelerate learning, but what they have to teach
may not always be beneficial.
Teaching and Learning
Adolescent cognitive growth benefits from
shared experiences and opinions.
Often communication via the Internet bolsters
fragile self-esteem.
Adolescents sometimes share personal
information online without thinking about the
possible consequences.
Teaching and Learning
Cyberbullying- Bullying that occurs via
Internet insults and rumors, texting,
anonymous phone calls, and video
Some fear that the anonymity provided by
electronic technology brings out the worst in
One expert on bullying believes that
cyberbullying is similar to other forms, new in
mode but not in intent or degree of harm.
Teaching and Learning
Entering a New School
The transition from one school to another often
impairs a young persons ability to function and learn.
Changing schools just when the growth spurt is
occurring and sexual characteristics are developing is
bound to create stress.
The first year in any new school (middle school, high
school, or college) correlates with increased bullying,
decreased achievement, depression, and eating
Teaching and Learning
High School
In theory and sometimes in practice, high schools
promote students analytic ability.
In the United States, an increasing number of high
school students are enrolled in classes that are
designed to be more rigorous and that require them to
pass externally scored exams.
Another manifestation of the trend toward more
rigorous education is the greater number of
requirements that all students must fulfill in order to
receive an academic diploma.
Teaching and Learning
high-stakes test
An evaluation that is critical in determining
success or failure.
A single test that determines whether a
student will graduate or be promoted is a
highstakes test.
Teaching and Learning
In the United States, one result of pushing
almost all high school students to pursue an
academic curriculum is that more are
prepared for college.
Another result is that more students drop out
of high school.
Teaching and Learning
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 10 Adolescence:
Psychosocial Development
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
Identity versus Role Confusion:
Eriksons term for the fifth stage of development, in
which the person tries to figure out Who am I? but is
confused as to which of many possible roles to adopt.
A consistent definition of ones self as a unique
individual, in terms of roles, attitudes, beliefs, and
Identity achievement:
Eriksons term for the attainment of identity, or the
point at which a person understands who he or she is
as a unique individual, in accord with past
experiences and future plans.
Not Yet Achieved
Role confusion (identity diffusion):
A situation in which an adolescent does not seem to
know or care what his or her identity is.
Eriksons term for premature identity formation, which
occurs when an adolescent adopts parents or
societys roles and values wholesale, without
questioning or analysis.
An adolescents choice of a socially acceptable way
to postpone making identity-achievement decisions.
Going to college is a common example.
Four Areas of Identity
1. Religious Identity
2. Gender Identity
Gender identity: A persons acceptance of the roles
and behaviors that society associates with the
biological categories of male and female.
Sexual orientation: A term that refers to whether a
person is sexually and romantically attracted to others
of the same sex, the opposite sex, or both sexes.
3. Political/Ethnic Identity
4. Vocational identity: Rarely achieved until age 25 for
at least four reasons:
a. Few teenagers can find meaningful work.
b. It takes years to acquire the skills needed for many
careers (premature to select a vocation at age 16).
c. Most jobs are unlike those of a generation ago, so it
is unwise for youth to foreclose on a vocation.
d. Most new jobs are in the service or knowledge
sectors of the economy. To be employable,
adolescents spend years mastering literacy, logic,
technology and human relations.
Four Areas of Identity
Relationships with Elders and
Conflicts with Parents
Parentadolescent conflict typically peaks in early
adolescence and is more a sign of attachment than of
Petty, peevish arguing, usually repeated and ongoing.
Although teenagers may act as if they no longer need
their parents, neglect can be very destructive.
Closeness within the family
Communication: Do parents and teens talk
openly with one another?
Support: Do they rely on one another?
Connectedness: How emotionally close are
Control: Do parents encourage or limit
adolescent autonomy?
Relationships with Elders and
Emotional Dependency
Adolescents are more dependent on their
parents if they are female and/or from a
minority ethnic group.
This can be either repressive or healthy,
depending on the culture and the specific
Relationships with Elders and
Do You Know Where Your Teenager Is?
Parental monitoring: Parents ongoing
awareness of what their children are doing,
where, and with whom.
Positive consequences when part of a warm,
supportive relationship
Negative when overly restrictive and controlling
Worst: Psychological control - a disciplinary technique
in which parents make a child feel guilty and impose
gratefulness by threatening to withdraw love and
Relationships with Elders and
Peer Support
A group of adolescents made up of close
friends who are loyal to one another while
excluding outsiders.
A larger group of adolescents who have
something in common but who are not
necessarily friends.
Peer pressure
Encouragement to conform to ones friends or
contemporaries in behavior, dress, and attitude;
usually considered a negative force, as when
adolescent peers encourage one another to defy adult
Teenagers select friends whose values and interests
they share, abandoning friends who follow other
Peer Support
Peers facilitate both destructive and constructive
behaviors in one another.
Makes it easier to do both the wrong thing (Lets all
skip school) and the right thing (Lets study
Helps individuals do things that they would be unlikely
to do on their own.
Deviancy training
Destructive peer support in which one person shows
another how to rebel against authority or social
Peer Support
Sequence of malefemale relationships during
childhood and adolescence:
Groups of friends, exclusively one sex or the other
A loose association of girls and boys, with public
interactions within a crowd
Small mixed-sex groups of the advanced members of
the crowd
Formation of couples, with private intimacies
Romance: Straight and Gay
First romances appear in high school and
rarely last more than a year.
Girls claim a steady partner more often than
boys do.
Breakups and unreciprocated crushes are
Adolescents are crushed by rejection and
sometimes contemplate revenge or suicide.
Many do not acknowledge their sexual orientation.
National and peer cultures often make the
homosexual young person feel ashamed.
Many gay youth date members of the other sex to
hide their true orientation.
Past cohorts of gay youth had higher rates of clinical
depression, drug abuse, and suicide than did their
heterosexual peers.
True number of homosexual, heterosexual, bisexual,
or asexual youth is unknown.
Romance: Straight and Gay
Sex Education
Learning from peers:
Adolescent sexual behavior is strongly influenced by
Specifics of peer education depend on the group: All
members of a clique may be virgins, or all may be
sexually active.
Virginity pledge in church-based crowds. If a group
considers itself a select minority, then virginity.
Only about half of U.S. adolescent couples discuss
issues such as pregnancy and STIs and many are
unable to come to a shared conclusion based on
accurate information.
Learning from parents
Parents often underestimate their adolescents need
for information.
Many parents know little about their adolescents
sexual activity and wait to talk about sex until their
child is already in a romantic relationship.
Gender and age are the most significant correlates of
parentchild conversations.
Parents are more likely to talk about sex to daughters than to
sons and to older adolescents (over 15) than to younger
Sex Education
Parents tend to underestimate adolescents
capacity to engage in responsible sex.
Proper condom use is higher among
adolescents than among adults.
Parental example may be more important
than conversation.
Sex Education
Learning in school
Abstinence-Only Programs:
1998: U.S. government decided to spend about $1
billion over 10 years to promote abstinence-only sex
education in public schools.
Goal: To prevent teen pregnancy and STIs by waiting
until marriage before becoming sexually active.
No information about other methods of avoiding
pregnancy and infection was provided.
Abstinence-only curriculum had little effect
Sex Education
Starting Early
The most effective programs:
1. begin before high school
2. include assignments that require parentchild
3. focus on behavior (not just on conveying information)
4. provide medical referrals on request
5. last for years
Important: Some school programs make a difference!
Sex Education
Sexual Behavior
Selected examples
In 2007, more than half of all U.S. teenagers had had
sexual intercourse by age 16.
The rate of teenage pregnancy in the United States
has declined dramatically since 1960.
Higher than in any other developed nation because
of American teenagers use less contraception.
86% of new teenage mothers are unmarried
About 20% of teenage couples use the pill and
condoms, to prevent both pregnancy and infection.
Sexual Behavior
Sadness and Anger
Self-esteem for boys and girls dips at puberty
Signs of depression are common
2007 Youth Risk Behavior Survey of ninth- to twelfth-
36% of girls and 21% of boys experienced
depressed symptoms within the past year
Clinical depression
Feelings of hopelessness, lethargy, and
worthlessness that last two weeks or more
Gender Differences
20% of female and 10% of male teenagers
experience clinical depression.
Cause for the gender disparity may be
biological, psychological, or social.
Cognitive explanation
Rumination: Repeatedly thinking and talking
about past experiences; can contribute to
depression and is more common in girls.
Sadness and Anger
Suicidal ideation:
Thinking about suicide, usually with some
serious emotional and intellectual or cognitive
Adolescent suicidal ideation is common,
completed suicides are not.
Adolescents are less likely to kill themselves
than adults are.
Misconceptions about adolescent suicide
1. The suicide rate for adolescents, low as it is, is
higher than it was in the early 1960.
2. Statistics on youth often include emerging adults,
whose suicide rates are higher than those of
3. Adolescent suicides capture media attention.
4. Suicide attempts are relatively common in
Cluster suicides
Several suicides committed by members of a
group within a brief period of time.
Any potentially lethal action against the self
that does not result in death.
Parasuicide is common, completed suicide is
Completed suicide:
Four risk increase risk:
1. Availability of guns
2. Use of alcohol and other drugs
3. Lack of parental supervision
4. A culture that condones suicide
Gender Differences in Suicide
Suicide rate among male teenagers in the U.S. is four
times higher than the rate for female teenagers.
Reasons for this difference
Availability of lethal means
Male culture that shames those who attempt suicide
but fail
Methods: Males tend to shoot themselves; females
swallow pills or hang themselves
Girls tend to let their friends and families know that
they are depressed, but boys do not.
Drugs and depression
Some adolescents self-medicate with drugs and
Decreased rates of adolescent suicide in the United
States because of antidepressants.
Some antidepressants (e.g. Prozac) may increase
suicidal ideation.
Untreated depression may be worse than potentially
hazardous drug treatments.
Anger and Aggression
Increased anger during puberty is normal but most
adolescents express their anger in acceptable ways.
Steady aggression throughout childhood and
adolescence (7%) is warning sign.
Juvenile delinquent
A person under the age of 18 who breaks the law
Life-course-persistent offender
A person whose criminal activity typically begins in
early adolescence and continues throughout life; a
career criminal
Adolescence-limited offender
A person whose criminal activity stops by age 21
Drug Use and Abuse
Age Differences
Drug use becomes widespread from age 10 to 25 and
then decreases
Drug use before age 18 is the best predictor of later
drug use
National Differences
Nations have markedly different rates of adolescent
drug use, even nations with common boundaries.
These variations are partly due to differing laws the
world over.
Cohort Differences
Drug use among adolescents has decreased in the
U.S. since 1976.
Adolescent culture may have a greater effect on drug-
taking behavior than laws do.
Most adolescents in the U.S. have experimented with
drug use and say that they could find illegal drugs if
they tried.
Most U.S. adolescents are not regular drug users and
about 20% never use any drugs.
Rates vary from state to state.
Drug Use and Abuse
Drug Use and Abuse
Gender Differences in Drug Use
Adolescent boys generally use more drugs
and use them more often.
Gender differences are reinforced by social
constructions about proper male and female
behavior (e.g., If I dont smoke, Im not a real
Drug Use and Abuse
Slows down growth (impairs digestion,
nutrition, and appetite)
Reduces the appetite
Causes protein and vitamin deficiencies
Can damage developing hearts, lungs, brains,
and reproductive systems
Drug Use and Abuse
Most frequently abused drug among North American
Heavy drinking may permanently impair memory and
self-control by damaging the hippocampus and the
prefrontal cortex.
Alcohol allows momentary denial of problems !
when problems get worse because they have been
ignored, more alcohol is needed
Denial can have serious consequences.
Drug Use and Abuse
Adolescents who regularly smoke marijuana
are more likely to drop out of school, become
teenage parents, and be unemployed.
Marijuana affects memory, language
proficiency, and motivation.
Drug Use and Abuse
Occasional use of any drug
Drug use is progressive and the first use usually
occurs as part of a social gathering.
Few adolescent drug users are addicts but occasional
drug use can lead to addiction.
The younger a person is when beginning drug use,
the more likely addiction will occur.
Occasional drug use excites the limbic system and
interferes with the prefrontal cortex ! drug users are
more emotional and less reflective.
Drug Use and Abuse
Preventing Drug Abuse: What
Generational forgetting
The idea that each new generation forgets what the
previous generation learned. As used here, the term
refers to knowledge about the harm drugs can do.
Project DARE
Drug Abuse Resistance Education
Features adults (usually police officers) telling
students about the dangers of drugs
DARE has no impact on later drug use
Scare tactics: May increase drug use because
1. The advertisements make drugs seem exciting
2. Adolescents recognize the exaggeration
3. the ads give some teenagers ideas about ways to
show defiance
Advertising campaigns against teen smoking:
Antismoking announcements produced by
cigarette companies increase use
Preventing Drug Abuse: What
Prevention and moderation of adolescent drug
use and abuse are possible.
Antidrug programs and messages need to be
carefully designed to avoid a backlash or
generational forgetting.
Preventing Drug Abuse: What
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 11 Emerging Adulthood
Body, Mind, and Social
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
Emerging Adulthood
The period between the ages of 18 and 25,
which is now widely thought of as a separate
developmental stage.
Also called young adulthood or youth.
Cultural and National
Strong and Healthy Bodies
Emerging adults are usually in good health.
Traditionally, the years between ages 18 and
25 were a time for hard physical work and
Physical work and parenthood are no longer
expected of every young adult in the twenty-
first century.
Cultural and National
The current level of food availability means
that in almost every nation, emerging adults
have reached full height (girls usually by age
16, boys by age 18).
For both sexes, muscle growth and fat
accumulation continue into the early 20s,
when women attain adult breast and hip size
and men reach full shoulder width and upper-
arm strength.
Cultural and National
By age 20, the immune system has developed
well enough to fight off everything from the
sniffles to cancer.
Usually, blood pressure is normal, teeth
develop no new cavities, heart rate is steady,
the brain is fully grown, and lung capacity is
as large as it will ever be.
Death from disease almost never occurs
during emerging adulthood.
Cultural and National
Cultural and National
The adjustment of all the bodys systems to
keep physiological functions in a state of
As the body ages, it takes longer for these
adjustments to occur, so it becomes harder
for older bodies to adapt to stress.
Nutrition and exercise underlie health at every
Cultural and National
Sex and Reproduction
The sexual-reproductive system is especially
vigorous during emerging adulthood.
The sex drive is powerful, infertility is rare,
orgasm is frequent, and birth is easy, with
fewer complications in the early 20s than at
any other time.
Sexual-reproductive characteristics are
produced by sex hormones, which peak in
both sexes at about age 20.
Cultural and National
With frequent intercourse and without contraception,
the average woman in her early 20s becomes
pregnant within three months.
Globalization, advanced technology, and modern
medicine have combined to produce effective
contraception, available in almost every nation.
As fewer infants die, people no longer need to begin
childbearing before age 20 or to have four or more
children simply to ensure that some of their children
will survive.
Cultural and National
replacement rate
The number of births per woman that would
be required to maintain a nations (or the
worlds) population with no increases or
The current replacement rate is considered to
be about 2.1 births per woman.
Birth rates have declined the world over, with
developing as well as developed nations
recording lower fertility rates.
Cultural and National
Cultural and National
Advances in contraception have not only
reduced the birth rate; they have also
increased the rate of sexual activity,
especially among unmarried adults.
Globally, emerging adults have fewer babies
but engage in more sexual activity than older
adults (married or not) do or than people their
own age once did.
Half of all emerging adults in the United
States have had at least one sexually
transmitted infection (STI).
Cultural and National
Taking Risks
Emerging adulthood is marked by a greater
willingness to take risks of all sorts, not just
sexual ones.
Young adults enjoy danger, drive without seat
belts, carry guns, try addictive drugs.
Cultural and National
Occupations, recreational activities, or other
ventures that involve a degree of risk or
The prospect of living on the edge makes
edgework compelling to some individuals.
extreme sports- Forms of recreation that
include apparent risk of injury or death and
that are attractive and thrilling as a result.
Cultural and National
drug abuse
The ingestion of a drug to the extent that it
impairs the users biological or psychological
drug addiction
A condition of drug dependence in which the
absence of the given drug from the
individuals system produces a drive
physiological, biological, or bothto ingest
more of the drug.
Cultural and National
Cultural and National
Drug abuse is particularly common among
those who die violently.
In the United States, between the ages of 15
and 25, almost 1 male in every 100 dies
violently, through suicide, homicide, or a
motor-vehicle accident.
About 4 times as many young men as young
women commit suicide or die in motor-vehicle
accidents, and 6 times as many are
Cultural and National
social norms approach
A method of reducing risky behavior among
emerging adults that is based on their desire
to follow social norms.
This approach publicizes survey results to
make emerging adults aware of the actual
prevalence of various behaviors within their
peer group.
Cognitive Maturity
Informed by Experience
Labouvie-Vief investigated age differences in
the way people described themselves.
These self-descriptions were categorized as
Self-protective (high in self-involvement, low in self-doubt)
Dysregulated (fragmented, overwhelmed by emotions or
Complex (valuing openness and independence above all)
Integrated (able to regulate emotions and logic)
Cognitive Maturity
No one under age 20 had reached the
advanced integrated stage, but some adults
of every age had.
The largest shift in self-description toward
higher levels occurred between adolescence
and emerging adulthood.
Cognitive Maturity
Cognitive Maturity
stereotype threat
The fear that someone else will judge ones
appearance or behavior negatively and thereby
confirm that persons prejudiced attitudes.
The mere possibility of being negatively stereotyped
arouses anxiety that can disrupt cognition and distort
emotional regulation.
Stereotype threat makes people of all ages doubt
their ability, which reduces learning if their anxiety
interferes with cognition.
Cognitive Maturity
Cognitive Growth and Higher Education
Most contemporary students attend college primarily
to secure their vocational and financial future.
College also correlates with better health: College
graduates everywhere smoke less, eat better,
exercise more, and live longer.
There is no doubt that tertiary education improves
verbal and quantitative abilities, knowledge of specific
subject areas, skills in various professions, reasoning,
and reflection.
Cognitive Maturity
Personality Patterns
Continuity and Change
Psychological research on personality traits of
twins from ages 17 to 24 finds both genetic
continuity and developmental improvements.
Emerging adults are open to new
The trend is toward less depression and more
joy, along with more insight into the self.
Personality Patterns
Mental Health and Illness
The many stresses and transitions of
emerging adulthood might be thought to
reduce self-esteem, but the research seems
to say otherwise.
Dealing with transitions successfully
especially leaving home, achieving identity,
attending and then graduating from college,
and securing a full-time jobcorrelates with
Personality Patterns
Worldwide, adults are more likely to have an
episode of mental illness during emerging
adulthood than during any later time.
Diathesisstress model
The view that psychological disorders, are
produced by the interaction of a genetic
vulnerability (the diathesis) and stressful
environmental factors and life events.
Personality Patterns
Each particular psychopathology has a
developmental trajectory, becoming more
common at certain ages than at others.
In addition to substance use disorders,
specific other problemsincluding mood
disorders, anxiety disorders, and
schizophreniaare more likely to appear in
emerging adulthood.
Identity and Intimacy
Identity Achieved
The search for identity (see Chapter 10) still
begins at puberty, but it continues much
Most emerging adults are still seeking to
determine who they are.
Erikson believed that, at each stage, the
outcome of earlier crises provides the
foundation of each new era.
Identity and Intimacy
Identity and Intimacy
Ethnic Identity
About half of the 18- to 25-year-olds identify
with very specific ethnic groups.
More than any other age group, emerging
adults have friends with diverse backgrounds.
Ethnic identity may affect choices in language,
manners, romance, employment,
neighborhood, religion, clothing, and values.
Identity and Intimacy
Eriksons sixth psychosocial stage, intimacy
versus isolation, particularly emphasizes that
humans are social creatures.
Intimacy progresses from attraction to close
connection to ongoing commitment.
Marriage and parenthood, as emerging adults
are discovering, are only two of several paths
to intimacy.
Identity and Intimacy
Throughout life, friends defend against stress
and provide joy.
Friends, new and old, are particularly crucial
during emerging adulthood.
Most single young adults have larger and
more supportive friendship networks than
newly married young adults once did.
Identity and Intimacy
Robert Sternberg (1988) described three
distinct aspects of love:
Passion- an intense physical, cognitive and emotional
onslaught characterized by excitement, ecstasy, and
Intimacy- knowing someone well, sharing secrets as well as
Commitment- grows gradually through decisions to be
together, mutual care giving, kept secrets, shared
possessions, and forgiveness.
Identity and Intimacy
Identity and Intimacy
To live with an unrelated persontypically a
romantic partnerto whom one is not
Most young adults in the United States,
England, and northern Europe cohabit rather
than marry before age 25.
Identity and Intimacy
Divorce is common(ending 45 percent of U.S.
marriages) and difficult, not only for the
partners but also for their familiestheir
parents as well as their children.
Domestic violence and excessive drinking are
more likely to occur among young adults who
cohabit than among those who marry.
Married couples are more likely to divorce if
they have lived together before marriage.
Emerging adults are supposedly independent,
leaving their childhood home and parents
Parents continue to be crucial influences after
age 18more so now than in the past.
Fewer emerging adults today have
established their own families, secured high-
paying jobs, or achieved a definitive
understanding of their identity and goals.
Identity and Intimacy
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 12 Adulthood:
Body and Mind
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
The Aging Process
A gradual physical decline that is related to aging and
during which the body becomes less strong and
Physical Appearance
Collagen decreases by about 1% per year
By age 30: Skin is becoming thinner and less flexible;
wrinkles become visible
By age 60: All faces are wrinkled
Hair turns gray and gets thinner
Middle-age spread appears
Muscles weaken
Height decreases by late middle age
Many changes occur more slowly in people who
The Aging Process
Peripheral vision narrows faster than frontal vision
Color vision shifts from vivid to faded more quickly
than does black and white
Nearsightedness: Increases gradually beginning in
ones 20s
Farsightedness: Lens of the eye is less elastic and
the cornea flattens by middle age
Younger adults are usually either nearsighted or
farsighted; most older adults are both.
Sense Organs
The Aging Process
Presbycusis: A loss of hearing that is
associated with senescence and that usually
does not become apparent until after age 60
The Aging Process
The Sexual Reproductive
Sexual responsiveness
Sexual arousal occurs more slowly with age, and
orgasm takes longer.
Distress at slower responsiveness is more associated
with anxiety, interpersonal relationships, and
expectations than with aging itself.
Study Findings:
Adults of all ages enjoy very high levels of emotional
satisfaction and physical pleasure from sex within their
Men and women were most likely to be extremely
satisfied with sex if they were in a committed,
monogamous relationship.
Fertility Issues
Infertility is most common in nations where
medical care is scarce and STIs are common.
United States: 15% of all couples are infertile,
partly because many postpone childbearing.
When couples in their 40s try to conceive,
about half are infertile and the other half risk
various complications.
Causes of Infertility
Male Fertility:
Multiple factors (e.g. advanced age, fever, radiation,
prescription drugs, stress, environmental toxins, drug
abuse, alcoholism, cigarette smoking) can reduce
sperm number, shape, and motility.
Female Fertility:
Affected by anything that impairs physical functioning
(e.g. advanced age, diseases, smoking, extreme
dieting, obesity).
Pelvic inflammatory disease can block a womans
fallopian tubes, preventing the sperm from reaching
an ovum.
Causes of Infertility
Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART)
Advances in medicine have solved about half of all
fertility problems.
ART overcomes obstacles such as a low sperm count
and blocked fallopian tubes.
In vitro fertilization (IVF)
A technique in which ova (egg cells) are surgically
removed from a woman and fertilized with sperm in a
laboratory. After the original fertilized cells (the
zygotes) have divided several times, they are inserted
into the womans uterus
Menopause and HRT
The time in middle age (around age 50) when a womans
menstrual periods cease completely and the production of
estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone drops
considerably. Menopause is dated to one year after a
womans last menstrual period.
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT)
Treatment to compensate for hormone reduction at
menopause or following surgical removal of the ovaries.
Such treatment, which usually involves estrogen and
progesterone, minimizes menopausal symptoms and
diminishes the risk of osteoporosis in later adulthood.
HRT may involve health risks.
Andropause (male
A term coined to signify a
drop in testosterone levels in
older men, which normally
results in a reduction in
sexual desire, erections, and
muscle mass.
Effectiveness of HRT are
Notable declines in cigarette smoking in the United
States over the past 50 years.
Worldwide trends are less encouraging.
Smoking rates in developing nations are rising.
Smoking-related cancers throughout the world are
Variations among nations, cohorts, and the sexes
indicate that smoking is affected by social norms,
laws, and advertising.
Drinking in moderation
Drinking in moderation (no more than two
drinks a day) increases life expectancy.
Alcohol reduces coronary heart disease and
Increases good cholesterol and reduces
bad cholesterol.
Lowers blood pressure.
Heavy Drinking
Increases the risk of violent death and is implicated in
60 diseases.
Stark international variations in alcohol abuse.
Binge drinking signals a problem: About 20% of U.S.
adults had five or more drinks on a single occasion in
the past year.
Disproportionate burden of harm in poorer countries
because prevention and treatment strategies have not
been fully established.
Poor Health Habits and
Many adults choose high-calorie, low-nutrient foods.
Only 27% of U.S. adults eat three daily servings of
Too many high-calorie foods combined with too little
activity leads to obesity.
Excess weight increases the risk of every chronic
disease (e.g. diabetes).
Poor Health Habits and
United States Facts:
Highest rates of obesity and diabetes
66% of U.S. adults are overweight; of those, 33% are
obese and 5% are morbidly obese
Metabolism decreases by one-third between ages 20
and 60.
Genetics: Two alleles that correlate with both diabetes
and weight
Increase in obesity rates cannot be blamed on genes
! cultural influences are more important!
Poor Health Habits and
Regular physical activity at every stage of life protects
against serious illness.
Sitting for long hours correlates with almost every
unhealthy condition.
Even a little movement helps but more intense
exercise (e.g. swimming, jogging, bicycling) is ideal.
The connection between exercise and health is
causal: People who are more fit are likely to resist
disease and to feel healthier as they age.
Poor Health Habits and
Factors that prevent a decline in exercise:
Friendship: People exercise more if their
friends do.
Communities: Adults exercise more in
neighborhoods with walking and biking paths,
ample fields and parks, and subsidized pools
and gyms.
Measuring Health
Death: Mortality usually refers to the number
of deaths each year per 1,000 members of a
given population.
Disease: Morbidity refers to the rate of
diseases of all kindsphysical and emotional,
acute (sudden), chronic (ongoing), and fatal
in a given population.
Long-term difficulty in performing
normal activities of daily life
because of some physical,
emotional, or mental condition.
A measure of health that refers to
how healthy and energetic
physically, emotionally, and
sociallyan individual actually
Variations in Health
Gender Differences
Mortality is lower for women.
Women live five years longer than men (significant
national variations).
Old women outnumber old men because more younger
men and boys die (sex ratio favors boys at birth, is about
equal at age 20, and tilts toward women from then on).
Gender difference might be biological (protective second
X chromosome or extra estrogen) or cultural (women
tend to have more friends and take better care of
Variations in Health
Women may suffer more on other measures of health:
Both sexes notice superficial signs of aging in women
more than in men.
Women have higher rates of depression than men.
Women have higher rates of morbidity for every.
chronic disease except heart disease in middle age
Women are more often disabled.
Variations in Health
Socioeconomic Status and Health
Well-educated, financially secure adults live
Suspected reasons:
Education teaches healthy habits.
Education leads to higher income, which allows
better housing and medical care.
Education may be a marker for intelligence, which
is a protective factor.
Culture and Health
Difficulty With Multitasking
Reactions take longer and complex memory
tasks become impossible because of age-
related brain changes.
Multitasking becomes more difficult with every
passing decade (e.g. driving while talking on a
cell phone).
Distractions (e.g. noisy conversations,
emotional stress) become more difficult to
Cognition in Adulthood
The Aging Brain
Cognition in Adulthood
The Aging Brain
The Need for Sleep
Regular sleep is increasingly essential for
proper brain functioning.
Skipping a nights sleep slows down cognitive
functions (e.g. memory).
Disrupted sleep is characteristic of aging and
can cause serious problems.
Cognition in Adulthood
The Aging Brain
Serious Brain Confusion
Dementia is uncommon in individuals under age 65
(less than 1% are affected).
Several lifestyle factors make brain loss more common:
1. Drug abuse: Alcohol, cigarettes, and psychoactive
drugs (including prescription pain relievers) can
severely damage the brain
2. Excessive stress: May lead to depression, an
overactive immune system, and harm to the brain
Cognition in Adulthood
The Aging Brain
3. Poor circulation: Everything that protects the
circulatory system (e.g. exercise, a healthy diet, and
low blood pressure) also protects the brain.
4. Viruses: Some viruses and infections cross the
blood-brain barrier and harm the brain (e.g. HIV and
the prion that causes mad cow disease).
Important: Past education, current intellectual activity,
exercise, and overall health all promote brain function!
Research on Age and
General intelligence (g)
A construct based on the idea that intelligence is one
basic trait that involves all cognitive abilities, which
people possess in varying amounts.
Cannot be measured directly but be inferred from
various abilities (e.g. vocabulary, memory, and
Many scientists are trying to find one common factor
(genes, early brain development, or some specific
aspect of health) underlies IQ.
Research on Age and
Cross-Sectional Research
U.S. Army: Tested the aptitude of all literate
draftees during World War I.
Intellectual ability peaked at about age 18, stayed at
that level until the mid-20s, and then began to decline.
Classic study of 1,191 individuals, aged 10 to
60, from 19 New England villages.
IQ scores peaked between ages 18 and 21 and then
gradually fell, with the average 55-year-old scoring
the same as the average 14-year old.
Research on Age and
Longitudinal Research
Longitudinal data found many intellectual gains
through adulthood but younger cohorts often better
than older cohorts.
Probably due to changes in the environment (more
education, improved nutrition, smaller family size,
fewer infections) and NOT changes in innate
Longitudinal research is better than cross-sectional
research but also has problems (e.g. practice effects,
high attrition rates).
Research on Age and
Cross-Sequential Research: Combines both cross-
sectional and longitudinal designs.
Seattle Longitudinal Study:
Cross-sequential study of adult intelligence
Schaie began this study in 1956; the most recent
testing was conducted in 2005.
500 adults, aged 20 to 50, were tested on five primary
mental abilities.
New cohort was added and followed every 7 years.
Research on Age and
Measures in the Seattle Longitudinal Study
1. verbal meaning (comprehension)
2. spatial orientation
3. inductive reasoning
4. number ability
5. word fluency (rapid associations)
People improve in most mental abilities during
adulthood and decline occurs later in life.
Each particular ability has a distinct pattern for each
Research on Age and Intelligence
Components of Intelligence
Two Clusters: Fluid and Crystallized (Cattell)
Fluid intelligence
Those types of basic intelligence that make learning
of all sorts quick and thorough. Abilities such as
working memory, abstract thought, and speed of
thinking are usually considered aspects of fluid
Crystallized intelligence
Those types of intellectual ability that reflect
accumulated learning. Vocabulary and general
information are examples.
Components of Intelligence
Three Clusters: Analytic, Creative, and Practical
Analytic intelligence
Valuable in high school and college, as students are
expected to remember and analyze various ideas.
Creative intelligence
Allows people to find a better match to their skills,
values, or desires.
Practical intelligence
Useful as people age and need to manage their daily
Components of Intelligence
Nine Clusters: Cultural Variations (Gardner)
Linguistic, logical-mathematical, musical, spatial,
bodily-kinesthetic, naturalistic, social understanding
(interpersonal intelligence), self-understanding
(intrapersonal intelligence), and existential intelligence
Each culture stresses a different set of Gardners nine
types of intelligence.
Everyone has all nine to some extent, but each
person develops only some of them.
Selective Gains and Losses
Selective Optimization with Compensation
Theory that people try to maintain a balance
in their lives by looking for the best way to
compensate for physical and cognitive losses
and to become more proficient in activities
they can already do well (Paul and Margaret
Baltes, 1990).
Selective expert
Someone who is notably more skilled and
knowledgeable than the average person about
whichever activities are personally meaningful.
Culture and context guide expertise.
Experts are more skilled, proficient, and
knowledgeable at a particular task than the average
person, especially a novice (literally, a new person)
who has not practiced that skill.
Experts do not necessarily have extraordinary
intellectual ability.
Characteristics of Expert
Expertise is intuitive
Experts rely on their past experiences and on
immediate contexts; their actions are more intuitive
and less stereotypic.
Novices follow formal procedures and rules.
Expertise is automatic
Experts process incoming information more quickly
and analyze it more efficiently than non-experts; then
they act in well-rehearsed ways that appear
Characteristics of Expert
Expertise is strategic
Experts have more and better strategies,
especially when problems are unexpected.
Expertise is flexible
Experts are creative and curious, deliberately
experimenting and enjoying the challenge
when things do not go according to plan.
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 13 Adulthood
Psychosocial Development
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
Ages and Stages
Ericksons Stages
Erikson originally envisioned eight stages of
development, which occur in sequence from
birth through old age.
Three of his stages cover the years after
Later in his life, Erikson stressed that stages
and ages do not occur in lockstep.
Ages and Stages
Ages and Stages
Maslows Stages
Abraham Maslow (1954) described five
stages, which occur in sequence.
Movement occurs when people have satisfied
their needs at one level and are ready for the
next step.
In his later years, Maslow reassessed his final
level, self-actualization.
He suggested another level after that, called
Ages and Stages
Ages and Stages
The Social Clock
A developmental timetable based not on
biological maturation but on social norms,
which set the stages of life and the behaviors
considered appropriate to each of them.
Some ages set by the social clock are
enacted into law, in the form of minimal ages
for driving, drinking, voting, getting married,
signing a mortgage, and being entitled to
retirement benefits.
Ages and Stages
Personality Throughout Adulthood
Genes, parental practices, culture, and adult
circumstances all contribute to personality.
Of these four, genes are probably the most
influential, according to longitudinal studies.
Since genes do not change from conception
through death, it is not surprising that every
study finds substantial continuity in
Ages and Stages
The Big Five
Openness: imaginative, curious, artistic, creative,
open to new experiences
Conscientiousness: organized, deliberate,
conforming, self-disciplined
Extroversion: outgoing, assertive, active
Agreeableness: kind, helpful, easygoing, generous
Neuroticism: anxious, moody, self-punishing,
The Big Five (arranged above so that their first letters spell the
word ocean, as a memory aid) correlate with almost every
aspect of adulthood.
Ages and Stages
Choosing a Lifestyle
In adulthood, people choose their particular
social context, or ecological niche.
Adults select vocations, mates, and
neighborhoods, and they settle into chosen
routines and surroundings.
Ages 30 to 50 are marked by more stability of
personality than are other periods of life.
Ages and Stages
Ages and Stages
Gender Differences in Personality
Men are higher in extroversion and openness,
women higher in conscientiousness and
These sex differences may be innate, perhaps
related to hormones.
gender convergence- A tendency for men
and women to become more similar as they
move through middle age.
Intimacy needs are lifelong.
Adults meet their need for social
connection through their relationships with
relatives, friends, coworkers, and romantic
social convoy
Collectively, the family members, friends,
acquaintances, and even strangers who move
through life with an individual.
are typically the most crucial members of the
social convoy
often able to provide practical help and useful
advice when serious problemsdeath of a
family member, personal illness, loss of a job
A comprehensive research study
(Fingerman et al., 2004) found that
friendships tend to improve with age.
Family Bonds
When family bonds are similar to
friendship bonds, relatives are mainstays
of the social convoy.
Physical separation does not necessarily
weaken family ties.
In fact, relationships between parents and
adult children are more likely to deteriorate
if they live together.
Family Bonds
Over the years of adulthood, parents and
adult children typically increase in
closeness, forgiveness, and pride as both
generations gain maturity.
The belief that family members should support
one another, sacrificing individual freedom
and success, if necessary, in order to
preserve family unity.
Family Bonds
Adult siblings also often become mutually
supportive in adulthood.
Adult siblings help one another cope with
children, marriage, and elderly relatives.
Sibling bonds are particularly likely to
develop during adulthood among children
who grew up in large families with major
stressors like extreme poverty or a bitter
Family Bonds
Family closeness can sometimes be
destructive, however.
Some adults wisely keep their distance
from their blood relatives.
They may instead become fictive kin in
another family, that is, someone who is
accepted and treated like a family
Family Bonds
Committed Partners
Adults everywhere seek committed sexual
partnerships to help meet their needs for
intimacy as well as to raise children, share
resources, and provide care when needed.
Less than 15 percent of U.S. residents marry
before age 25, but by age 40, 85 percent have
Married people are a little happier, healthier, and
richer than never-married onesbut not by
Committed Partners
Contrary to outdated impressions, the
empty nest (the time when parents are
alone again after their children have
moved out and launched their own lives)
often improves a relationship.
Most long-married people stay together
because they love and trust each other,
not simply because they are stuck.
Committed Partners
Adults are affected (for better or for worse)
by divorce in ways they never anticipated.
Generally, those in very distressed
marriages are happier after divorce, while
those in merely distant marriages (most
U.S. divorces) are less happy than they
thought they would be.
Divorce reduces income, severs
friendships, and weakens family ties.
The consequences of divorce last for
Income, family welfare, and self esteem
are lower among the formerly married than
among people of the same age who are
still married or who have always been
Almost one out of two marriages ends in
divorce in the U.S.
According to Erikson, after the stage of
intimacy versus isolation comes
generativity versus stagnation, when
adults seek to be productive in a caring
Adults satisfy their need to be generative
in many ways, including creativity,
caregiving, and employment.
Some caregiving involves meeting another
persons physical needsfeeding,
cleaning, and so onbut much of it has to
do with fulfilling another persons
psychological needs.
A caregiver who takes responsibility for
maintaining communication among family
The chief form of generativity is
establishing and guiding the next
Every parent is tested and transformed by
the dynamic experience of raising children.
Just when an adult thinks he or she has
mastered the art of parenting, the child
advances to the next stage and the adult
is required to make major adjustments.
Roughly one-third of all North American adults
become stepparents, adoptive parents, or foster
Many adopted or foster children remain attached
to their birth parents, part of the normal human
affection for familiar caregivers.
If children are not attached to anyone (as can
happen when they spend years in an institution),
they are mistrustful of all adults and fearful of
becoming too dependent.
The average age of new stepchildren is 9 years,
which means that usually they are strongly connected
to their biological parents.
This helps the child but hinders the stepparents.
Young stepchildren often get hurt, sick, lost, or
disruptive, and teenage stepchildren may get
pregnant, drunk, or arrested.
Generativity, with patient, authoritative parenting, is
Adoptive parents have several advantages:
they are legally connected to their children for
life, the biological parents are usually absent,
and they desperately wanted the child.
Strong bonds can develop, especially when
the children are adopted as infants.
During adolescence, these bonds may stretch
and loosen as some adoptive children
become intensely rebellious.
Fewer adults are available to care for
elderly family members and there are
more older adults.
Siblings relationships can be strained if a
parent becomes frail and needs care.
One sibling usually becomes the chief
sandwich generation
The generation of middle-aged people who
are supposedly squeezed by the needs of
the younger and older members of their
In reality, some adults do feel pressured by
these obligations, but most are not burdened
by them, either because they enjoy fulfilling
them or because they choose to take on only
some of them or none of them.
The other major avenue for generativity.
Adults have many psychosocial needs that
employment can fulfill.
Unemployment is associated with higher
rates of child abuse, alcoholism,
depression, and many other social
Even though average income has
doubled, overall happiness within the
United States has not risen in the past 50
relative deprivation
The idea that people compare themselves to
others in their group and are satisfied if they
are no worse off than the group norm.
Work meets generativity needs by allowing
people to do the following:
Develop and use their personal skills
Express their creative energy
Aid and advise coworkers, as a mentor or
Support the education and health of their
Contribute to the community by providing
goods or services
extrinsic rewards of work
The tangible benefits, usually in the form of
compensation (e.g., salary, health insurance,
pension), that one receives for doing a job.
intrinsic rewards of work
The intangible gratifications (e.g., job
satisfaction, self-esteem, pride) that come
from within oneself as a result of doing a job.
Diversity in the workplace
Diversity in employees backgrounds presents
a challenge for employers as well as for
Not everyone has the same expectations,
needs, and desires.
A skilled and knowledgeable person who advises
or guides an inexperienced person.
One recent change in the labor market
that impedes generativity is an increased
frequency of hiring and firing.
Between ages 25 and 42, the average
worker in the United States has five
separate employers.
Older workers find job changes particularly
Another recent change in employment
patterns is the proliferation of work
schedules beyond the traditional 9-to-5,
An arrangement in which work schedules are
flexible so that employees can balance
personal and occupational responsibilities.
Working at home and keeping in touch with
the office via computer, telephone, and fax.
About one-third of all working couples who
have young children and nonstandard
schedules save on child care by having
one parent at home while the other is at
Coping with Stress
Any situation, event, experience, or other
stimulus that causes a person to feel
allostatic load
The total, combined burden of stress and
disease that an individual must cope with.
Coping with Stress
Some stressors, such as serious illness or
unexpected job loss, are major.
Others are minor, but ongoing hassles,
such as traffic on the daily commute or the
added work of raising twins.
Physiological reactions take a toll, and
past stressors make it more likely that a
new stressor will have an impact.
Coping with Stress
organ reserve
The capacity of human organs to allow the body to
cope with unusual stress.
problem-focused coping
A strategy often used by younger adults to deal with
stress in which they tackle a stressful issue directly.
emotion-focused coping
A strategy often used by older adults to deal with
stress in which they change their feelings about the
stressor rather than changing the stressor itself.
Coping with Stress
Gender also affects how a person
responds to stress and thus affects
allostatic load.
Men are inclined to be problem-focused, reacting in a
fight-or-flight manner.
Women are more emotion-focused, likely to tend and
Virtually every study finds that social
support is crucial in reducing allostatic
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 14 Late Adulthood:
Body and Mind
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
A form of prejudice in which people are categorized
and judged solely on the basis of their chronological
Considers people as part of a category and not as
A condescending way of speaking to older adults that
resembles baby talk, with simple and short sentences,
exaggerated emphasis, repetition, and a slower rate
and a higher pitch than normal speech.
Believing the Stereotypes About
Old Age
An Imagined Threat
Stereotype threat
Anxiety about the possibility that other people
have prejudiced beliefs.
Responses to stereotype threat include
dyeing hair, undergoing plastic surgery,
dressing in youthful clothes, and moving
quickly to look agile (or spry).
Young-Old, Old-Old, and
Young-old (70%)
Healthy, vigorous, financially secure older adults
(those aged 60 to 75) who are well integrated into the
lives of their families and communities.
Old-old (20%)
Older adults (those aged 75 to 85) who suffer from
physical, mental, or social deficits.
Oldest-old (10%)
Elderly adults (those over age 85) who are dependent
on others for almost everything, requiring supportive
services such as nursing-home care and hospital
The Elderly: Burden or
A Pyramid Becomes a Square
Population Pyramid
A graphic representation of population as a series of
stacked bars in which each age cohort is represented
by one bar, with the youngest cohort at the bottom.
The Elderly: Burden or
Three reasons for traditional pyramidal shape
1. Far more children were born than the replacement rate
2. Before modern sanitation and nutrition, about half of all
children died before age 5
3. Middle-aged people rarely survived adult diseases like
cancer and heart attacks
The demographic stacks in some industrialized
nations are already does not have a pyramidal shape
and is almost square.
The Elderly: Burden or
Dependence and Independence
Dependency ratio
A calculation of the number of self-sufficient,
productive adults compared with the number of
dependents (children and the elderly) in a given
Current dependency ratio is about 2:1 in most
industrialized nations (better than it has ever been).
Ratio could flip to 1:2 if baby-boomers live to 100 and
the emerging adults are not be self-sufficient until age
The Elderly: Burden or
Caregivers or Care Receivers?
Older people probably give more care than they
They are more likely than younger adults to vote,
pray, participate in civic groups, and donate time and
money to various causes as well as to their own
Only the oldest-old need ongoing care: In the U.S.
and Canada, only about 4% of the over-65 population
are in nursing homes or hospitals.
A Short Time For Illness
Compression of morbidity
A shortening of the time a person
spends ill or infirm before death;
accomplished by postponing
Due to improvements in lifestyle,
medicine, and technological aids.
North Americans who live to be
95 are likely to be independent
almost all of those years.
Ageism and the Aging Senses
Senescence is pervasive and
Obvious in appearance (skin gets
wrinkled, bodies change shape)
and the senses.
Only 10% of people over age 65
see well without glasses.
Taste, smell, touch, and hearing
are also impaired (e.g. by age 90,
the average man in North America
is almost deaf, hearing only 20
percent of what he once did).
Ageism and the Aging Senses
Technology and Sensory Deficits: Technology can
compensate for almost all sensory loss.
Visual problems:
Brighter lights and bifocals or two pairs of glasses are
Cataracts, glaucoma, and macular degeneration can
be avoided or mitigated if diagnosed early.
Elaborate visual aids (canes that sense when an
object is near, infrared lenses, service animals,
computers that speak written words) allow even the
legally blind to be independent.
Ageism and the Aging Senses
Ageism and the Aging Senses
Auditory problems
Small and sensitive hearing aids are available but
many people still hesitate to get aids.
Missing out on bits of conversation cuts down on
communication and precipitates many other social
Younger people tend to yell or use elderspeak, both
of which are demeaning.
Elderly people are less vulnerable to stereotype threat
if they have positive interactions with the younger
The Society and Sensory Loss
A passive acceptance of sensory loss increases
morbidity of all kinds.
It is often difficult to individualize available technology.
Ageism is inherent in the design of everything from
airplane seats to shoes.
Many disabilities would disappear if the environment
were better designed.
Health and Sickness
Primary Aging
The universal and irreversible physical
changes that occur to all living creatures as
they grow older.
Secondary Aging
The specific physical illnesses or conditions
that become more common with aging but
result from poor health habits, genetic
vulnerability, and other influences that vary
from person to person.
Cardiovascular Disease
The Cardiovascular Health Study
Participants: More than 5,000 people over age 65 in the
United States without coronary problems.
Six years later, some participants had developed heart
The likelihood of CVD was strongly related to six risk
factors (all more common with age):
Abdominal fat
High blood pressure
Lack of exercise
High cholesterol
Facts about CVD
CVD is considered secondary aging because not
everyone develops it.
No single factor (including age, hypertension, inactivity,
and smoking) makes CVD inevitable.
The links among aging, risk, and CVD are undeniable.
A 90-year-old is 1,000 times more likely to die of cardiovascular
disease than is a 30-year-old, even if both have identical genes,
social contexts, and health habits
Less than half those over age 65 have CVD, diabetes, or
dementia but almost everyone has at least one of these three by
age 90.
Risk factors and diseases of the aged are not distributed
randomly: If a person has one risk factor, it is likely that he or
she has several.
Staying Healthy
Aging body becomes less efficient at digesting food
and using nutrients.
People need fewer calories as they grow older.
A healthful diet is very important for mind and body in
late adulthood.
Some older people take drugs that affect nutrition
(e.g. aspirin, antibiotics, antacids, laxatives, caffeine).
Many elders do not drink enough (awareness of thirst
is reduced and the kidneys and bladder are less
Staying Healthy
Staying Healthy
Elders benefit from regular exercise.
Older people exercise less than younger adults do.
Most exercise classes, team sports, and
equipments are designed for the young.
Muscles stiffen and atrophy, making exercise more
Movement of any kind is better than sitting still and
regular exercise can compress morbidity.
Accommodation to disability may be needed.
Staying Healthy
Drug Use
Most people stop abusing drugs before middle age
and active addicts rarely survive to old age.
Addictiontypically to alcohol or legally prescribed
medicationsmay begin in late adulthood.
Changes in metabolism, less efficient liver
functioning, and increased likelihood of living alone
are risk factors for alcoholism.
Moderation is best: One or two glasses of wine or
beer a day benefit the heart and may postpone
Living a Long Live
Maximums and Average
Maximum life span
The oldest possible age to which members of a
species can live, under ideal circumstances. For
humans, that age is approximately 122 years.
Average life expectancy
The number of years that the average person in a
particular population is likely to live.
In the U.S. today, average life expectancy at birth is
about 75 years for men and 81 years for women.
Dramatic variations from nation to nation.
Anti Aging
A person who has lived 100 years or more
Calorie Restriction
The practice of limiting dietary energy intake,
while still consuming sufficient quantities of
vitamins, minerals, and other important
nutrients, for the purpose of improving health
and slowing down the aging process.
Thinking in Late Adulthood
The Aging Brain
Brain Slowdown
Senescence reduces production of
neurotransmitters .
Neural fluid decreases, myelination thins, and
cerebral blood circulates more slowly.
Speed is crucial for many aspects of cognition
(e.g. memory, sensation, perception, and
strategy) and may be the g - the intellectual
ability that is the foundation of all other aspects
of intelligence.
Variation in Brain Efficiency
Brain senescence varies markedly from
individual to individual.
The suggested reasons include gender,
education, experience, and elders
assessment of whether their everyday
activities are restricted by their health.
Brain Shrinkage
The hypothalamus (memory) and the prefrontal cortex
(planning, inhibiting unwanted responses, and
coordinating thoughts) shrink faster than some other
brain areas.
Complicated relationship among past education, current
mental exercise, and intellectual functioning in late
Schooling may slow the rate of brain shrinkage.
Good health may protect the brain more than education.
Education strengthens inhibition, the ability to say no or keep
quiet, and this learned inhibition masks impairment when the
prefrontal cortex shrinks.
Using More Parts of the Brain
Older adults use more parts of their brains to solve
problems than younger adults.
Two possible explanations:
a) Selective compensation
Older adults may find that using only one brain region is
inadequate for complex thinking, so they automatically use more
Intellectual output may be unimpaired, even though the process
of thinking has changed.
Brain de-differentiation: Brain stops using a focused
region for each function, inhibition fails, attention
wanders, and thinking becomes diffuse.
The Usual: Information
Processing After Age 65
Input (Sensing)
Some information never reaches sensory memory in older
people because the senses never detect the stimuli.
The brain automatically fills in missed sights and sounds.
Most older people believe they see and hear whatever is important
but vital information may be distorted or lost without the person
realizing it.
Elderly peoples underlying problem with sensory input may
1) in the brain (the input is not processed correctly)
2) in the senses (the input never reaches the brain)
3) in both
The Usual: Information
Processing After Age 65
Storage (Memory)
Stereotype threat: If older people suspect their
memories are fading, anxiety itself impairs
Some aspects of memory remain strong
throughout late adulthood while others do not.
For example, memory for vocabulary (semantic
memory) is good, but memory for events (episodic
memory) declines.
Source amnesia (forgetting the source of a specific
fact, idea, or snippet of conversation) is common.
The Usual: Information
Processing After Age 65
Working Memory
Brain slowdown reduces working memory because older
individuals take longer to perceive and process the
sensations they experience.
Reduced working memory inhibits multitasking (requires
screening out distractions and inhibiting irrelevant
thoughts while focusing on two or more relevant tasks).
When older people can take their time and concentrate, their
working memory seems as good as ever.
Concentration may crowd out other mental tasks that a younger
person could do simultaneously.
The Usual: Information
Processing After Age 65
Programming (Control Processes)
Control Processes
The part of the information-processing system
that consists of methods for regulating the
analysis and flow of information. Useful
control processes include memory and
retrieval strategies, selective attention, and
rules or strategies for problem solving.
Control processes become less effective with
Cognitive Output
Gradual decline in output of primary mental abilities (e.g.
verbal meaning, spatial orientation, inductive reasoning,
number ability, word fluency) is normal.
Two important modifiers:
1. Health is a better predictor of cognition than age.
Those who will die soon (whether they are 75 or 105) may
experience terminal decline, a faster loss of cognitive ability in
the final years of their lives.
Those who have many more decades to live experience much
less decline.
2. Training can improve cognitive ability, even for the very
The Impaired: Dementia
Irreversible loss of intellectual functioning caused by
organic brain damage or disease. Dementia becomes
more common with age, but it is abnormal and
pathological even in the very old.
Mild Cognitive Impairment
Affects older adults with cognitive problems who are
still able to function.
About half of them will become demented, but some
stabilize with mild impairment and others regain their
cognitive abilities.
The Impaired: Dementia
Alzheimer Disease
Alzheimer disease (AD)
The most common cause of dementia,
characterized by gradual deterioration of
memory and personality and marked by the
formation of plaques of beta-amyloid protein
and tangles of tau protein in the brain. Also
called senile dementia of the Alzheimer type
Alzheimer Disease
Genes involved in Alzheimer Disease
AD in middle age is rare, usually caused by
genes (e.g., Down syndrome), and progresses
Most cases of AD begin much later and many
genes have some impact (e.g., SORL1 and
Genetic tests for AD in late adulthood are rarely
used before symptoms appear because they
might evoke false fear or deceptive reassurance.
Alzheimer Disease
Stages of Alzheimer Disease
Beginning Stages:
Personality changes
Memory loss eventually becomes dangerous
Final stage
Full-time care is needed
Communication ceases
Identity and personality are lost
Death comes 10 to 15 years after the first signs
Vascular Dementia
Vascular dementia (VaD)
A form of dementia characterized by sporadic,
and progressive, loss of intellectual
functioning caused by repeated infarcts, or
temporary obstructions of blood vessels,
which prevent sufficient blood from reaching
the brain. Also called multi-infarct dementia.
Other Dementias
Frontal lobe dementia
A form of dementia characterized by personality
changes caused by deterioration of the frontal lobes
and the amygdala. Also called frontotemporal lobar
Parkinson disease
Does not always lead to dementia
Starts with rigidity or tremor of the muscles as
neurons that produce dopamine degenerate.
Younger adults with Parkinson disease may avoid
dementia for years; older people develop dementia
Other Dementias
Lewy body dementia
Named after round deposits of protein (Lewy
bodies) in the neuron.
Numerous and dispersed throughout the
Motor movements and cognition are
The main symptom is loss of inhibition.
Prevention of Impairment
Regular physical exercise: Reduces the
incidence of all forms of dementia by half.
Avoiding the pathogens that cause dementia:
Testing beef for mad cow disease, using
condoms to protect against AIDS, treating
syphilis with antibiotics.
Treatment of Dementia
1. Taking care of the overall health of the person
2. Getting a proper diagnosis
3. Starting appropriate treatment
There is a need for professionals who are trained
and dedicated, able to provide individualized
medical and psychological care for the patient
and the family, who shoulder most of the
burden of caring for people with dementia.
The Optimal: New Cognitive
Erikson and Maslow
The final stage in Eriksons model in which
older people gain interest in the arts, in
children, and in human experience as a
The final stage in Maslow's hierarchy of
needs, characterized by aesthetic, creative,
philosophical, and spiritual understanding.
The Life Review
Life review
An examination of ones own part in life, which
often takes the form of stories written or
spoken by elderly people who want to share
them with younger ones.
An expert knowledge system dealing with the
conduct and understanding of life.
Life review, self-actualization, and integrity are
considered parts of wisdom.
Some elderly people are unusually wise.
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Chapter 15 Late Adulthood
Psychosocial Development
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
Theories of Late Adulthood
Development is more diverse in late
adulthood than at any other age.
Some elderly people run marathons and
lead nations, while others are no longer
able to move or think.
Many social scientists have tried to
understand these variations as well as the
general course of old age.
Theories of Late Adulthood
Self Theories
Theories of late adulthood that emphasize the
core self, or the search to maintain ones
integrity and identity.
Integrity versus despair
The final stage of Erik Eriksons
developmental sequence, in which older
adults seek to integrate their unique
experiences with their vision of community.
Theories of Late Adulthood
Most older people consider their personalities
and attitudes to have remained quite stable
over their life span, even as they recognize
the physical changes of their bodies.
Objects and places become more precious in
late adulthood than they were earlier, as a
way to hold on to identity.
The tendency to cling to familiar places and
possessions may be problematic if it leads to
compulsive hoarding.
Theories of Late Adulthood
Continuity theory
The theory that each person experiences the
changes of late adulthood and behaves
toward others in a way that is consistent with
his or her behavior in earlier periods of life.
In this perspective, each innovation is a new
expression of the old self.
One source of continuity is temperament.
The Big Five personality traits (see Chapter 13)
are maintained throughout old age as in younger
Theories of Late Adulthood
Selective optimization with compensation
is central to self theories.
Positivity effect
The tendency for elderly people to perceive,
prefer, and remember positive images and
experiences more than negative ones.
Selective memory is a way to compensate for
whatever troubles occur.
Unpleasant experiences are reinterpreted as
Theories of Late Adulthood
Self-perception normally tilts toward
integrity rather than despair.
Research on what people hope for
themselves (the ideal self ) and how they
perceive themselves (the real self) finds
that, with age, the two selves come closer
As self theory contends, self-acceptance
leads to happiness.
Theories of Late Adulthood
Stratification Theories
Theories that emphasize that social forces,
particularly those related to a persons social
stratum, or social category, limit individual
choices and affect a persons ability to
function in late adulthood as past stratification
continues to limit life in various ways.
Theories of Late Adulthood
Industrialized nations segregate elderly people,
gradually shunting them out of the mainstream of
society as they grow older.
Segregation by age harms everyone because it
creates socialization deficits for members of all age
Theories of Late Adulthood
disengagement theory
The view that aging makes a persons social
sphere increasingly narrow, resulting in role
relinquishment, withdrawal, and passivity.
activity theory
The view that elderly people want and need to
remain active in a variety of social sphereswith
relatives, friends, and community groupsand
become withdrawn only unwillingly, as a result of
Activities in Late Adulthood
The activities of older people are intense and
The psychological benefits of work can be
obtained through volunteer work.
Work provides social support and status,
boosting self-esteem.
For many people, employment allows
Activities in Late Adulthood
Besides needing the money, some employees
over age 65 stay on the job because they
appreciate the social recognition and self-
fulfillment that work brings.
Many people once believed that older adults
were healthier and happier when they were
employed than when they were unemployed and
that retirement led to illness and death.
Only when retirement is precipitated by poor
health or fading competence does it correlate
with illness.
Activities in Late Adulthood
Activities in Late Adulthood
Home, Sweet Home
One of the favorite activities of many retirees
is caring for their own homes.
In keeping up with household tasks and
maintaining their property, many older people
demonstrate that they prefer to age in place.
They want to stay in the same dwelling where
they lived as younger adults, adjusting but not
leaving when health fades.
Activities in Late Adulthood
Naturally Occurring Retirement
Community (NORC)
A neighborhood or apartment complex whose
population is mostly retired people who
moved to the location as younger adults and
never left.
An important reason for both aging in place
and NORCs is the social convoy, the result of
years of close relationships.
Activities in Late Adulthood
Continuing Education
About one out of five U.S. adults age 66 and
older was enrolled in some kind of continuing
education in 2005.
Most elderly students are motivated primarily
by a desire for personal or social
In some ways, late adulthood is an ideal time
for learning.
Activities in Late Adulthood
Religious Involvement
Older adults are less likely to attend religious
services than are the middle-aged.
But, faith increases with age, as do praying
and other religious practices.
Religious institutions fulfill many needs, and a
nearby house of worship is one reason
American elders prefer to age in place.
Activities in Late Adulthood
Political Activism
Fewer older people turn out for massive rallies
and only about 2 percent volunteer in political
More older people write letters to their elected
representatives, vote, and identify with a
political party.
Many government policies affect the elderly,
especially those regarding housing, pensions,
prescription drugs, and medical costs.
Friends and Relatives
Long-Term Partnerships
Spouses buffer each other against the
problems of old age, thus extending life.
Married older adults are healthier, wealthier,
and happier than unmarried people their age.
Shared Laughter
One characteristic of long-married couples is
that they often mirror each others moods.
Thanks to the positivity effect, the mood is
often one of joy.
Friends and Relatives
One of the amazing aspects of long-term
relationships is how interdependent the
partners become over time.
Another aspect of long marriages also
suggests mutual respect.
Generally, older spouses accept each
others frailties, assisting with the partners
physical and psychological needs.
Friends and Relatives
In addition to relinquishing the work role,
retirees must usually adjust the marriage
interaction, now that they will be spending
more time at home with their spouse.
This increased interaction sometimes
precipitates relationship conflicts.
Friends and Relatives
Another common event that long-married
older adults must face is the death of their
Adjustment to being widowed is especially
difficult during the first two years after the
Because women tend to marry older men, the
average married woman experiences 4 to 10
years of widowhood and the average man,
Friends and Relatives
Relationships with Younger Generations
In past centuries, most adults died before their
grandchildren were born.
Today, some families span five generations.
Beanpole family
multiple generations but only a few members in
each one
Friends and Relatives
Although elderly peoples relationships with
members of younger generations are usually
positive, they can also include tension and
Few older adults stop parenting simply
because their children are grown.
Adult children also imagine parental
disapproval, even if it is not outwardly
Friends and Relatives
Friends and Relatives
Feelings of familism prompt siblings, cousins,
and even more distant relatives to seek out
one another.
Filial responsibility
The obligation of adult children to care for
their aging parents.
A major goal among adults in the United
States is to be self-sufficient.
Adult children may be more willing to offer
support than their parents are to receive it.
Friends and Relatives
Extensive research has found that
relationships between parents and adult
children are affected by many factors:
Assistance arises from need and from the ability to
Frequency of contact is related to geographical
proximity, not affection.
Love is influenced by the interaction remembered
from childhood.
Sons feel stronger obligation; daughters feel
stronger affection.
Friends and Relatives
Most (85 percent) elders over age 65 are
Factors influencing the nature of the
grandparent-grandchild relationship:
national background
past family interactions
age and the personality of the child
Friends and Relatives
In the United States, contemporary
grandparents follow one of four
approaches to dealing with their
Remote grandparents (sometimes called distant grandparents)
are emotionally distant from their grandchildren.
Companionate grandparents (sometimes called fun-loving
grandparents) entertain and spoil their grandchildren.
Involved grandparents are active in the day-to-day lives of their
Surrogate parents raise their grandchildren, usually because the
parents are unable or unwilling to do so.
Friends and Relatives
Many middle-aged adults, married and
unmarried, have no children.
Elderly people who have spent a lifetime
without a spouse usually have friendships,
activities, and social connections.
All the research finds that older adults need at
least one close companion.
The Frail Elderly
Frail elderly
People over age 65, and often over age 85,
who are physically infirm, very ill, or
cognitively disabled.
Most older adults become frail if they live long
Frailty is most common in the months
preceding death.
The Frail Elderly
Activities of Daily Life
Actions that are important to independent living,
typically identified as five tasks of self-care:
transferring from a bed to a chair
Inability to perform any of these tasks is a sign of
The Frail Elderly
Instrumental activities of daily life
Actions (for example, paying bills and driving
a car) that are important to independent living
and that require some intellectual competence
and forethought.
The ability to perform these tasks may be
even more critical to self-sufficiency than ADL
The Frail Elderly
The Frail Elderly
Caring for the Frail Elderly
Family caregivers experience substantial
Their health may suffer, and their risk of
depression increases, especially if the care
receiver has dementia.
In the United States, the spouse is the usual
The Frail Elderly
Even in ideal circumstances with community
support, family caregiving can present
If one adult child is the primary caregiver, other
siblings tend to feel relief or jealousy.
Care receivers and caregivers often disagree
about schedules, menus, doctor visits, and so on.
Resentments on both sides disrupt mutual
affection and appreciation.
Public agencies rarely provide services unless an
emergency arises.
The Frail Elderly
When caregiving results in resentment and
social isolation, the risk of depression, poor
health, and abuse escalates.
Abuse is likely when:
the care receiver is a feeble person who suffers
severe memory loss
the caregiver is a drug-addicted relative
care occurs in an isolated place
visitors are few and far between
The Frail Elderly
Most research finds that:
about 5 percent of elders say they are abused
up to one-fourth of all elders are vulnerable but do not report
Elders who are mistreated by family members are
ashamed to admit it.
Outright abuse is now rare in nursing homes.
In the United States, the trend over the past 20 years
has been toward fewer nursing-home residents
(currently about 1.5 million people nationwide).
The Frail Elderly
Assisted living
A living arrangement for elderly people that
combines privacy and independence with
medical supervision.
Assisted-living facilities range from group
homes for three or four elderly people to large
apartment or townhouse developments for
hundreds of residents.
Invitation to the Life Span
by Kathleen Stassen Berger
Death and Dying
PowerPoint Slides developed by
Martin Wolfger and Michael James
Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington
The study of death and dying, especially of
the social and emotional aspects
Thanatology is not morbid or gloomy; it
reveals the reality of hope in death,
acceptance of dying, and reaffirmation of life
Death and Hope Understanding
Death Throughout the Life Span
Death in Childhood
Children have a different perspective of death.
They are more impulsive and may seem happy one day and
morbidly sad the next.
They do not get over the death of a parent, nor do they dwell
on it.
They may take certain explanations (e.g. Grandma is sleeping,
Grandpa went on a trip) literally.
Fatally ill children typically fear abandonment ! frequent and
caring contact is more important than logic.
Older children turn into more concrete operational
thinkers; they seek specific facts and become less
anxious about death and dying.
Death in Adolescence and
Emerging Adulthood
Teenagers have little fear of death (they take risks, place
a high value on appearance, and seek thrills).
Adolescents often predict that they will die at an early
age and their developmental tendency toward risk taking
can be deadly (e.g., suicides, homicides, car accidents).
Romanticizing death makes young people vulnerable to
cluster suicides, foolish dares, fatal gang fights, and
drunk driving.
Death in Adulthood
When adults become responsible for work and family
death is to be avoided or at least postponed.
Many adults quit taking addictive drugs, start wearing
seat belts, and adopt other precautions.
Death anxiety usually increases from ones teens to
ones 20s and then gradually decreases.
Ages 25 to 60: Terminally ill adults worry about leaving
something undone or leaving family members
especially childrenalone.
Death in Late Adulthood
Death anxiety decreases and hope rises.
One sign of mental health among older adults is
acceptance of their own mortality and altruistic concern
about those who will live on after them.
Many older adults accept death (e.g. they write their
wills, designate health care proxies, reconcile with
estranged family members, plan their funeral).
The acceptance of death does not mean that the elderly
give up on living!
Religions and Hope
People who think they might die
soon are more likely than others to
believe in life after death.
Virtually every world religion
provides rites and customs to
honor the dead and comfort the
Although not everyone observes
religious customs, those who care
for the dying and their families
need extraordinary sensitivity to
cultural traditions.
Near-Death Experience
An episode in which a person comes close to dying
but survives and reports having left his or her body
and having moved toward a bright white light while
feeling peacefulness and joy.
Near-death experiences often include religious
Survivors often adopt a more spiritual, less
materialistic view of life.
To some, near-death experiences prove that there is
a heaven but scientists are more skeptical.
Dying and Acceptance
Good death
A death that is peaceful, quick, and painless
and that occurs after a long life, in the
company of family and friends, and in familiar
People in all religious and cultural contexts
hope for a good death.
Bad death
Lacks these six characteristics and is
dreaded, particularly by the elderly
Honest Conversation
Stages of Dying
I. Kbler-Ross: Identified emotions experienced by dying
people, which she divided into a sequence of five stages:
1. Denial (I am not really dying.)
2. Anger (I blame my doctors, or my family, or God for my
3. Bargaining (I will be good from now on if I can live.)
4. Depression (I dont care about anything; nothing matters
5. Acceptance (I accept my death as part of life.)
Honest Conversation
II. Stage Model based on Maslows hierarchy of
1. Physiological needs (freedom from pain)
2. Safety (no abandonment)
3. Love and acceptance (from close family and friends)
4. Respect (from caregivers)
5. Self-actualization (spiritual transcendence)
Honest Conversation
Telling the Truth
Most dying people want to spend time with loved ones
and to talk honestly with medical and religious
It is unethical to withhold information if the patient asks
for it although some people do not want the whole truth.
Hospital personnel need to respond to each dying
person as an individual, not merely as someone who
must understand that death is near.
The Hospice
An institution or program in which terminally ill
patients receive palliative care
Hospice caregivers provide skilled treatment to relieve
pain and discomfort; they avoid measures to delay
death and their focus is to make dying easier
Two principles for hospice care:
1. Each patients autonomy and decisions are
2. Family members and friends are counseled before the
death, shown how to provide care, and helped after
the death.
Palliative Medicine
Palliative care
Care designed not to treat an illness but to provide
physical and emotional comfort to the patient and
support and guidance to his or her family.
Double effect
An ethical situation in which an action (such as
administering opiates) has both a positive effect,
which is intended (relieving a terminally ill persons
pain), and a negative effect, which is foreseen but not
intended (hastening death by suppressing
Choices and Controversies
Brain death: Prolonged cessation of all brain activity with
complete absence of voluntary movements; no
spontaneous breathing; no response to pain, noise, and
other stimuli. Brain waves have ceased; the EEG is flat;
the person is dead.
Locked-in syndrome: The person cannot move, except
for the eyes, but brain waves are still apparent; the
person is not dead.
Choices and Controversies
Coma: A state of deep unconsciousness from which the
person cannot be aroused. Some people awaken
spontaneously from a coma; others enter a vegetative
state; the person is not dead.
Vegetative state: A state of deep unconsciousness in
which all cognitive functions are absent, although eyes
may open, sounds may be emitted, and breathing may
continue; the person is not yet dead. This state can be
transient, persistent, or permanent. No one has ever
recovered after two years; most who recover (about 15
percent) improve within three weeks. After time has
elapsed, the person may, effectively, be dead.
Longer Life
The average person lived twice as long in 2010 as in
Later death due to drugs, surgery, and other
interventions (e.g., respirators, defibrillators, stomach
tubes, and antibiotics) .
Many adults under age 50 once died of causes that
now kill relatively few adults in developed nations,
such as complications of childbirth and epidemic
Passive Euthanasia
A situation in which a seriously ill person is allowed to
die naturally, through the cessation of medical
DNR (do not resuscitate)
A written order from a physician (sometimes initiated
by a patients advance directive or by a health care
proxys request) that no attempt should be made to
revive a patient if he or she suffers cardiac or
respiratory arrest.
Active Euthanasia
A situation in which someone takes action to bring
about another persons death, with the intention of
ending that persons suffering.
Legal under some circumstances in the Netherlands,
Belgium, Luxembourg, and Switzerland, but it is illegal
(yet rarely prosecuted) in most other nations.
Physician-Assisted Suicide
A form of active euthanasia in which a doctor provides
the means for someone to end his or her own life.
Slippery Slope
The argument that a given action will start a
chain of events that will culminate in an
undesirable outcome.
Concern: Hastening death when terminally ill
people request may cause a society to slide
into killing sick people who are not ready to
dieespecially the old and the poor.
Advance Directives
Advance Directive
A document that contains an individuals instructions
for end-of-life medical care, written before such care
is needed.
Living Will
A document that indicates what kinds of medical
intervention an individual wants or does not want if he
or she becomes incapable of expressing those
Health Care Proxy
A person chosen by another person to make medical
decisions if the second person becomes unable to do
Normal Grief
The sense of loss following a death
The powerful sorrow that an individual feels at the
death of another
The ceremonies and behaviors that a religion or
culture prescribes for people to employ in expressing
their bereavement after a death
Placing Blame And Seeking
Placing blame
Common impulse after death for the survivors (e.g.,
for medical measures not taken, laws not enforced,
unhealthy habits not changed)
The bereaved sometimes blame the dead person,
sometimes themselves, and sometimes distant others
Nations may blame one another for public tragedies
Blame is not necessarily rational
Placing Blame And Seeking
Seeking Meaning
Often starts with preserving memories (e.g.,
displaying photographs, telling anecdotes)
Support groups offer help when friends are unlikely to
understand (e.g., groups for parents of murdered
Organizations devoted to causes such as fighting
cancer and banning handguns often find supporters
among people who have lost a loved one to that
particular circumstance
Close family members may start a charity
Complicated Grief
Absent Grief
A situation in which overly private people cut
themselves off from the community and customs that
allow and expect grief; can lead to social isolation.
Disenfranchised Grief
A situation in which certain people, although they are
bereaved, are prevented from mourning publicly by
cultural customs or social restrictions.
Incomplete Grief
A situation in which circumstances, such as a
police investigation or an autopsy, interfere
with the process of grieving.
The grief process may be incomplete if
mourning is cut short or if other people are
distracted from their role in recovery.
Diversity of Reactions
Reactions to death are varied
Other people need to be especially
responsive to whatever needs a grieving
person may have.
Most bereaved people recover within a
A feeling of having an ongoing bond with the
deceased is no longer thought to be