Department: Human Development and Learning

Course Number: HDAL 2325

Course Title: Child and Adolescent Psychology for Educators

Semester Hours: Three (3)

Date of Revision: 01/01


Course Outline:

1. Introduction

2. Theories of Child and Adolescent Development

3. Research Methods

4. Genetic and Chromosomal Disorders

5. Issues in Conception and Birthing

6. Sensation and Perception

7. Cognition – Piagetian and Information-Processing Approaches

8. Language and Intelligence

9. Socio-Emotional Development

10. Moral Development

11. Diversity and Gender Development

12. Peer Relations

13. Developmental Psychopathology

14. Implications for Educators

Catalog Description: (under revision)



Additional Course Information:

Child and adolescent psychology are branches of developmental psychology devoted to the growth and changes happening from conception through the beginning of adulthood. The focus of this course directs attention to developmental issues in the earlier period of the lifespan as they may be of concern to those entering the field of education. Topics from developmental psychology are reiterated and analyzed for applicability to an educational setting. This course is appropriate for persons interested in teaching in schools as well as those planning careers in child care centers, developmental services, residential treatment, and similar specialty schools for children and youth.

Course Topics:

Historical views of childhood, nativism, empiricism, evolution, continuity vs discontinuity, normative vs idiographic, G.Stanley Hall, John Watson, Freud, Arnold Gesell, Jean Piaget, Erik Erikson, Lev Vygotsky, Margaret Mead, Ruth Benedict, Carl Rogers, Abraham Maslow, information-processing theories of cognition, A.Bandura’s social learning, ethology, sociobiology, U.Bronfenbrenner’s ecological systems approach, quantitative/qualitative research, naturalistic observations, correlational studies, experiments, quasi-experiments, field experiments, longitudinal, cross-sectional, and cross-sequential research designs, case studies, cross-cultural research, comparative research, ethical issues in research – peer review, informed consent, debriefing, and confidentiality, a panoply of syndromes (Turner, Williams, Down, etc.), teratogens, major milestones in physical, sensory, and linguistic development, J.Piaget’s stages of cognitive development: sensorimotor, preoperational, concrete operational, and formal operational, memory processes, metamemory and metacognition, problem-solving, academic abilities, IQ tests: Stanford-Binet, Wechsler, and Kaufman assessments, S.Ceci’s bioecological theory of intelligence, H.Gardner’s multiple intelligences, temperament, attachment, parenting, self development, L.Kohlberg’s stage model of moral development, aggression, gender roles and stereotypes, diversity, androgyny, friendship, popularity and rejection, sibling relations, juvenile delinquency, substance abuse, suicide, depression, elopement, puberty, early/late maturation, human sexuality, sports, nutrition, eating disorders, achievement, the system of care for children and youth, career planning.

Course Objectives:

· Describe the major theories of child and adolescent development including the maturational, psychodynamic, behavioral, psychosocial, cognitive, social learning, ecological, existential/phenomenological, sociocultural, ethological, sociobiological, and interactionist perspectives.

· Memorize theories of learning including behavioral, cognitive, and social paradigms with special emphasis on information-processing and memory.

· Understand qualitative vs quantitative research and evaluate the utility and accuracy of conclusions from analyzed data.

· Design action research.

· Identify major genetic and chromosomal disorders.

· Elaborate on the effects of teratogens on human development.

· Argue intelligently the pros and cons of natural childbirth.

· Anticipate the major milestones of maturation.

· List the 4 stages of cognitive development as detailed by Piaget.

· State the 8 stages of psychosocial development as theorized by Erikson.

· Analyze the ethics of alternative methods of fertilization and conception.

· Comprehend the fields of education for the visually and aurally impaired.

· Grasp the essentials of language development.

· Recognize types of temperament and attachment.

· Create programs to teach social skills and inculcate affective education.

· Explain proper exercise and nutrition.

· Implement effective behavior management in the classroom.

· Help prevent psychosocial problems such as substance abuse, delinquency, suicide, and depression thru educational interventions and programs.

· Assist teens with aspects of early or late maturation.

· Relate to issues of human sexuality by promoting effective family life programs.

· Encourage appropriate gender development by avoiding differential responses as a teacher – the egalitarian classroom.

· Accept diversity by teaching tolerance.

· Describe Kohlberg’s stages of moral development and demonstrate how to facilitate this passage for young people.

· Incorporate reflective counseling into one’s repertoire of helping skills.

· Summarize developmentally appropriate educational practice.


Course Title: Child and Adolescent Development for Educators

Credit Hours: Three (3)

Semester: regularly offered

Instructor: Steve Cockerham

Telephone: 423/439-4189

Office: Room 301A Warf-Pickel

Office Hours: as posted

Course Management and Evaluation Policies

Examinations: There will be three (3) exams scheduled during the semester at the ends of each succeeding month, followed by a final exam after the end of classes. Make-up exams can be arranged for illness or emergency circumstances. The final exam must be taken at the date and time scheduled by the university unless special arrangements are made in advance.

Attendance: Class attendance is required. Excessive absences result in a lower letter grade for each week missed.

Class Project: A major aspect of this course requires completion of a creative activity that is documented appropriately for evaluation by the instructor. The overall category from which to select a topic relates to a significant developmental problem or issue faced by students. Choose a type of problem or issue and become more expert in assisting students to deal with the particular kinds of situations encountered. Examples of topics include juvenile delinquency, learning disabilities, teen pregnancy, behavior management, after-school programs, cerebral palsy, substance abuse, ADHD, school phobia, maltreatment, etc. The project consists of investigating the topic and gaining expertise, then reporting on this process. The creative activities are based upon reading, interviewing, observing, and/or participating. Involvement may range from full to vicarious but the finished product will be graded. The project must be documented in relevant fashion, either a written paper, a portfolio, a video, a PowerPoint, or similar presentation. Be prepared to share the project with class. Length, style, format, and content are chosen by the student and may be discussed with the instructor. The project documentation is due the last class meeting before Spring Break.

Grading: The three (3) exams given during the semester compose one-third (1/3) of the final grade, the final exam counts one-third (1/3), and the class project adds the last third (1/3). Extra credit is available for those who choose to augment regular course demands. It is not required. Absenteeism affects the final grade average.

Grading Scale: When computing numerically from letter grades…

A 100 B 86 C 76 D 66

A- 93 B- 83 C- 73 D- 63

B+ 89 C+ 79 D+ 69 F 59

The exam scores and final grade coincide with the 10-point university grading scale.



Study Guide



Piaget- Cognitive-Development Theory

Four stages of cognitive-development

1. Sensorimotor stage- birth-2 yrs. Infants think by acting on the world with their eyes, ears, and hands. As a result the invent ways of solving sensorimotor problems such as finding hidden toys, etc.

2. Preoperational stage- 2-7 yrs. Preschool children use symbols to represent their earlier sensorimotor discoveries. Development of language and make-believe play takes place.

3. Concrete operational stage- 7-11 yrs. Children’s reasoning becomes logical. School-age children understand that a certain amount of a substance remains the same even after it’s appearance changes (ex. Liquid in two different sized containers). Thinking is not yet abstract in this stage

4. Formal operational stage- 11 years on. The capacity for abstraction permits adolescents to reason with symbols that do not refer to objects in the real world, as in advanced mathematics.

Bronfenbrenner- Ecological Systems Theory

Ecological systems theory views the person as developing within a complex system of relationships affected by multiple levels of the surrounding environment.

1. Microsystem- innermost level of the environment. Refers to activities and interaction patterns in the person’s immediate surroundings.

2. Mesosystem- refers to connections between Microsystems that foster development.

3. Exosystem- social settings that do not contain the developing person but nevertheless affect experiences in immediate settings.

4. Macrosystem- consists of the values, laws, customs, and resources of a particular culture. In this system, the priority that the macrosystem gives to the needs of children and adults affects the support they receive at the inner levels of the environment.

5. Chronosystem- the environment is dynamic and ever-changing. The temporal dimension of Bronfenbrenner’s model.

Vygotsky- Sociocultural Theory

Sociocultural theory focuses on how culture is transmitted to the next generation.

Culture- the values, beliefs, customs, and skills of a social group.


Social interaction- cooperative dialogues with more knowledgeable members of society, according to Vygotsky, is necessary for children to acquire the ways of thinking and behaving that make up a communities culture.

Vygotsky emphasizes the role of direct teaching.

Private Speech- the inner dialogue that children use when encountering difficult tasks.

Zone of proximal development- the range of tasks too difficult for the child to do alone but can be done with the help of others. Children then take the language of these dialogues, make it their own private speech, and use this to organize their own independent efforts.

Havighurst- Developmental Tasks and Education

Developmental tasks- skills, knowledge, functions, and attitudes that individuals have to acquire at certain points in their lives through physical maturation, social expectations, and personal effort.

Havighurst’s 8 major tasks:

1. Accepting one’s physique and using the body effectively

2. Achieving new and more mature relations with age mates of both sexes.

3. Achieving a masculine or feminine sex role.

4. Achieving emotional independence from parents and other adults.

5. Preparing for an economic career

6. Preparing for marriage and family life.

7. Desiring and achieving socially responsible behavior

8. Acquiring a set of values and ethical system as a guide to behavior- developing and ideology.



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