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Psychology - Human Development Cheat Sheet by

Research Methods and Development


Harry Harlow
rhesus monkeys
matern­al-­sep­ara­tion, dependency needs, social isolation, importance of caregiving and compan­ionship to social and cognitive develo­pment
Contact comfort
Mary Ainsworth
infant is placed in scenarios with or without its mother as well as with or without a stranger
develo­pment of the attachment theory, observe early emotional attachment between a child and its primary caregiver
Strange Situation Classi­fic­ation (SSC)
Jean Piaget
improv­ising conver­sations with children to understand their unique mental worlds
how children develop intell­ect­ually throughout the course of childhood
Genetic Episte­mology
Lev Vygotsky
social intera­ction plays a critical role in children's learning & is continuous process that is profoundly influenced by culture
Social Constr­uct­ivism (socio­cul­tural)
rat maze, withheld food
indivi­duals do more than merely respond to stimuli; they act on beliefs, attitudes, changing condit­ions, & strive toward goals
Purposive Behavi­orism
dogs & bell, drooling
people will repeat an action without realizing that they have been condit­ioned to do so
Classical Condit­ioning
Bobo Doll, aggres­sio­n/i­mmi­tation
we learn social behavior by observing and imitating the behavior of others
Social Learning
children receive “rewards” for using language in a functional manner.
Operant Condit­ioning

Research Design (infants & Children)

examines change within indivi­duals, stability vs change over time. (ex. at 12mo, 18mo, & 24mo)
costly, attrition, practice effect, cohort effects
changes between groups (ex. average changes between age groups)
yield inform­ation on age-re­lated change, not develo­pment per se
(both longit­udinal and cross-­sec­tional compar­isons) children of different ages are enrolled into a study at various points in time to examine age-re­lated changes, develo­pment within the same indivi­duals as they age, and account for the possib­ility of cohort effects
costly, practice effects
the strategy or blueprint for deciding how to collect and analyze inform­ation, dictates which methods are used and how

Research Methods (Infants)

involu­ntary or obligatory responses
because of limited motor control, test involu­ntary responses
Ex. habitu­ation vs dishab­itu­ation
Bailla­rgeon and colleagues (1985): Object Permanence & Solidity Principle
voluntary responses
behaviors that a person completes by choice
Ex. recall memory and elicited imitation
psycho­phy­sio­logical responses
measure heart rate, hormone levels, brain activity, etc.
Ex. event-­rel­ate­d-p­ote­ntials (ERPs)

Interview Techniques

vernal report paradigms
children provide written or verbal answers to scenarios

Human Develo­pment

(egg + sperm) = zygote = blastula = neural tube
Attachment (~8mo), Language (babbl­ing), Cognition (Piaget)
Object perman­ence, conser­vation, abstract reasoning, theory of mind, cultural influence
Spectrum, cis vs trans, adrenarche (6-12) and menarche

Research Design (Infants & Children)



minor partic­ipants are asked to indicate their willin­gness to partic­ipate in a study
partic­ipant drops out, or fails to complete, all parts of a study
bidire­ctional relations
one variable is likely both cause and conseq­uence of another variable
cohort effects
research findings differ for partic­ipants of the same age tested at different points in historical time
cross-­sec­tional research
examines behavior in partic­ipants of different ages who are tested at the same point in time
partic­ipants demons­trate increased attention (through looking or listening behavior) to a new stimulus after having been habituated to a different stimulus
elicited imitation
A behavioral method used to examine recall memory in infant
event-­related potentials (ERP)
recording of partic­ipant brain activity using a stretchy cap
partic­ipants demons­trated decrease attention to repeat­edl­y-p­res­ented stimuli.
informed consent
getting permission from adults
instit­utional Review Boards (IRBs)
reviews and approves research procedures
involu­ntary or obligatory responses
Behavior that does not require much conscious thought
motor control
thinking to direct muscles and limbs
object permanence
unders­tanding that objects continue to exist even when they cannot be directly observed
practice effect
partic­ipants get better at a task over time by “pract­icing” ( can be partic­ularly proble­matic in longit­udinal and sequential research designs)
recall memory
rememb­ering discrete episodes or events from the past (including encoding, consol­idation and storage, and retrieval)
solidity principle
idea that two solid masses should not be able to move through one another
violation of expect­ation paradigm
research method in which infants are expected to respond in a particular way because one of two conditions violates or goes against what they should expect based on their everyday experi­ences


mating & natural selection
innate behavior
herita­bility & enviro­nment


what is culture?
obeying norms, roles, enviro­nmental cues, prejud­ice­/st­ero­types, confor­mity, bonding, inferi­ority
dispos­ition bias
person­ality traits influence behavior
situation bias
situation influences behavior
fundam­ental attrib­ution
bias from situation bias
cognitive dissonance
belief system contra­dicts behavior
positive attitude toward familiar things
validity effect
believing something that is repeated
ne's own group is superior
cultural relativism
view that other groups are all equally valid and no one system is really “better”
invuln­era­bility illusion
group can do no wrong
dissenters stay quiet
pressure to conform
teasing and pressuring
illusion of consensus


what is culture?
obeying norms, roles, enviro­nmental cues, prejud­ice­/st­ero­types, confor­mity, bonding, inferi­ority


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