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47 Cards in this Set

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the process by which individuals acquire the beliefs, values, and behaviors considered desirable or appropriate by their culture or subculture
socialization
a detailed record of an infant's growth and development over a period of time
baby biography
a set of concepts and propositions designed to organize, describe, and explain an existing set of observations
theory
a criterion for evaluating the scientific merit of theories; a parsimonious theory is one that uses relatively few explanatory principles to explain a broad set of observations
parsimony
a criterion for evaluating the scientific merit of theories; a theory is falsiable when it is capable of generating predictions that could be disconfirmed
falsfiability
a criterion for evaluating the scientific merit of theories. A heuristic theory is one that continues to stimulate new research and new discoveries
heuristic value
a theoretical prediction about some aspect of experience
hypothesis
the idea that children are inherently selfish egoists who must be controlled by society
original sin
the idea that infants are born with an intuitive sense of right and wrong that is often misdirected by the demands and restrictions of society
innate purity
the idea that the mind of an infant is a "blank slate" and that all knowledge, abilities, behaviors, and motives are acquired through experience
tabula rasa
debate within developmental psychology over the relative importance of biological predispositions (nature) and environmental influences (nurture) as determinants of human development
nature versus nurture issue
debate among developmental theorists about whether children are active contributors to their own development or passive recipients of environmental influence
activity/passivity issue
debate among theorists about whether developmental changes are best characterized as gradual and quantitative or abrupt and qualitative
continuity/discontinuity
a distinct phase within a larger sequence of development; a period characterized by a particular set of abilities, motives, behaviors, or emotions that occur together and form a coherent pattern
developmental stage
normative developments that all individuals display
universal development
developmental outcomes that vary from person to person
particularistic development
an attitude or value about the pursuit of knowledge that dictates that investigators must be objective and must allow their data to decide the merits of their theorizing
scientific method
the extent to which a measuring instrument yields consistent results, both over time and across observers
reliability
the extent to which a measuring instrument accurately reflects what the researchers intended to measure
validity
a technique in which all participants are asked the same questions in precisely the same order so that the responses of different participants can be compared
structured interview/questionnaire
a type of interview in which a participant's response to each successive question (or problem) determines what the investigator will ask next
clinical method
a method in which the scientist tests hypotheses by observing people as theyengage in everyday activities in their natural habitats(for example, at home, at school or on the playground)
naturalistic observation
tendency of participants to react to an observer's presence by behaving in unusual ways
oberver influence
a procedure in which an investigator records the frequencies with which individuals display particular behaviors during the brief time intervals that each participant is observed
time sampling
an observational method in which the investigator cues the behavior of interest and observed participants' responses in a laboratory
structured observation
a research method in which the investigator gathers extensive information about the life of an individual and then tests developmental hypotheses by analyzing the events of the person's lfie history
case study
method in which the researcher seeks to understand the unique values, traditions, and social processes of a culture or subculture by living with its members and making extensive obervations and notes
ethnography
a type of research design that indicates the strength of associations among variables; though correlated variables are systematically related, these relationships are not necessarily causal
correlational design
a numerical index, ranging from -1.00 to +1.00, of the strength and direction of the relationship between two variables
correlation coefficient
a research design in which the investigator introduces some change in the participant's environment and then measures the effect of that change on the participant's behavior
experimental design
the aspect of the environment that an experimenter modifies or manipulates in order to measure its impact on behavior
independent variable
the aspect of behavior that is measured in an experiment and assumed to be under the control of the independent variable
dependent variable
some factor other than the independent variable that, if not controlled by the experimenter, could explain any differences across treatment conditions in participants'performance on the dependent variable
confounding variable
steps taken by an experimenter to ensure that all extraneous factors that could influence the dependent variable are roughly equivalent in each experimental condtion; these precautions must be taken before an experimenter can be reasonably certain that observed changes in the dependent variable were caused by the manipulation of the independent variable
experimental control
a control technique in which participants are assigned to experimental conditions through an unbiased procedure so that the memebers of the groups are not systematically different from one another
random assignment
an experiment that takes palce in a naturalistic setting such as the home, the school, or a playground
field experiment
state of affairs in which the findings of one's research are an accurate representation of processes that occur in the natural enviornment
ecological validity
a study in which the investigator measures the impact of some naturally occuring event that is assumed to affect people's lives
natural (quasi) experiment
a research design in which subjects from different age groups are studied at teh same point in time
cross-sectional design
age-related differences among cohorts that is attributable to cultural/historical differences in cohorts' growing-up experiences rather than to true developmental change
cohort effect
a research design in which one group of subjects is studies repeatedly over a period of months or years
longitudinal design
nonrandom loss of particpants during a study, resulting in a nonrepresentative sample
selective attrition
a subgroup that differs in important ways from the larger group (or population) to which it belongs
nonrepresentative sample
the fact that long-term changes in the environment may limit conclusions of a longitudinal project to that generation of children who were growing up while the study was in progress
cross-generational problem
a research design in which subjects from different age groups are studied repeatedly over a period of months or years
sequential design
a research design in which particpants are studied intensively over a short period of time as developmental chagnes occur; attempts to specify how or why those changes occur
microgenetic design
a study that compares the behavior and/or development of people from different cultural or subcultural backgrounds
cross-cultural comparison