Lifespan Development: Telling the Human Story - Ecomm

Product Details
Author(s): Heather Von Bank
ISBN: 9781680756678
Edition: 1
Copyright: 2018
Available Formats
Format: GRLContent (online access)


Overview of
Lifespan Development: Telling the Human Story - Ecomm


Writing a textbook that covers the events of the entire span of human life is a daunting task, believe me; in the nine months that it has taken me to research, write, edit, and re-write this text a human baby could have been born, learned to crawl, and would be eating solid foods by now! However, the real task is now ahead of you, the student, who has chosen to take a lifespan development course, and is expected to read and learn about lifespan development theories that describe the transitions, growth, and changes that human's experience in a lifetime, and apply those theories to your future career. Ideally the structure of the text will allow students to make more efficient connections between one’s lived or observed experiences with children or adults and the classical and contemporary theories of human development. I have taught a Lifespan Development course for 10 years, and while the task has become more routine with each year, I have found that results of new research studies are calling into question once undisputable theories. These theories must now must evolve and change to more fully describe the process of human development. The purpose of this book is to explore the lifespan development by examining humans’ physical, social, emotional, and physical development. This text is focused on the ways in which individuals’ environments, biology, and the interaction between the two effect developmental outcomes. Throughout the text, students will see common topics or threads such as learning through play, the important role of attachment figures, the role that relationships have on providing optimal outcomes for individuals, and how theories of development are ever-changing.


Structure of the Text

This text will allow students to understand how development occurs across the human lifespan. Each chapter focuses on a different stage of development. Before the prenatal development stage, however, students will be introduced to foundational concepts and research methods in Chapters 1 and 2. Then prenatal development will follow in Chapter 3 along with the infancy stage in Chapter 4. These formative stages set the course of an individual's life and will address how teratogens, or environmental agents can affect the physical and cognitive development of infants, and the role that caregivers have in forming attachments with their child. Chapters 5 and 6 focus on early and middle childhood between the ages of 2 to 6, and 7 to 11 years old. It is these magical stages in which play becomes the primary drive in how children are motivated to learn. Chapter 7 focuses on adolescent development ages 13 to 17 and walks students through the process of puberty, social awkwardness, and how teens eventually reach the stage of higher order thinking. Chapters 8 and 9 cover early and middle adulthood. Emerging adulthood focusing on the extended state of adolescence, and how it allows young adults more time to practice being adults, and early adulthood finds individuals seeking life satisfaction through their relationships and careers. Then in middle adulthood, individuals feel the pull between caring for aging parents and raising their own children. Chapter 10 covers late adulthood and the eventual cognitive and physical declines that occur after age 60. Then onto chapter 11 which covers death, dying and bereavement. While it is not ideal to end a text on a potentially gloomy topic like death, it is imperative that students understand the human lifecycle and know that we should have difficult conversations with loved ones about death, loss, and bereavement.


Exercises and Learning Activities

Throughout the chapters, students will answer questions through writing exercises and will take part in polls or questionnaires. Students should consider these learning activities or writing exercises as opportunities to consider the information in the text and more fully and find ways to make the theories more personally relatable. Students will find that there is not a right or wrong answer to the question. Rather, students will be asked to provide their points of view or perspective on the topic, which will require students to practice critical thinking skills. Students responses to these exercises and activities will benefit their learning. Making the information personal and relatable will increase students’ knowledge acquisition and will increase understanding of theories of social-emotional development, physical development, and cognitive growth.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 | Foundations

Chapter 2 | Research Methods

Chapter 3 | Prenatal Development

Chapter 4 | Infancy

Chapter 5 | Early Childhood

Chapter 6 | Middle Childhood

Chapter 7 | Adolescence

Chapter 8 | Early Adulthood

Chapter 9 | Middle Adulthood

Chapter 10 | Late Adulthood

Chapter 11 | Death, Dying, Bereavement