Unit One: Science and Practice in Human Development Unit One Introduction We will begin this course with an exploration of the foundations for understanding the lifespan journey. This journey will include and introduction to major concepts and themes, theories, and research strategies characteristic of developmental psychology. Then we will review the beginning stages of life (i.e., prenatal development)—miraculous, complex, and mysterious still. Lifespan development, the scientific study of human growth throughout life, is a latecomer to psychology. Its roots lie in child development, the study of the child and teen years. Lifespan development synthesizes what researchers know about our unfolding lives. Lifespan development is multi-disciplinary, meaning it draws on a variety of different fields to understand human development (e.g., nursing, psychology, etc.). Lifespan development explores the predictable milestones on our human journey. Lifespan development focuses on individual differences and similarities among people. Lifespan development explores the impact of life transitions and practices. Theories attempt to explain what causes us to act as we do. They may allow us to predict the future. Ideally, they give us information about how to improve the quality of life. They may offer broad explanations of behavior that apply to people at every age, or describe changes that occur at particular ages. Theories give us lenses for interpreting behavior. Research allows us to discover the validity and reliability of our theory. —————————————————————————————————————– • 1.1Text/Media Textbook: The Life Span: Human Development for Helping Professionals Media Link: PBS NOVA Documentary Life’s Greatest Miracle https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/body/life-greatest-miracle.html • Instructions 1. Read Chapters 1-2 in The Life Span: Human Development for Helping Professionals. 2. View Life’s Greatest Miracle Media Link. ——————————————————————————————————————- Assignments 1.2Threaded Discussion: Introduction: Theory Introduction There are two questions provided below based on the readings for this unit for you to discuss. This allows you the opportunity to demonstrate your engagement with the assigned readings for this lesson. Instructions 1. After reading Chapters 1-2, discuss: ? What is the importance of theory and research in human? ? Explain why having a working knowledge of development or a “developmental template” is useful to helping professionals.