What is Development?

Topics: Developmental psychology, Psychology, Cognition Pages: 2 (519 words) Published: August 24, 2013
What is Development? Development can be defined as the orderly changes of an individual from conception to death. From a biological point of view, development can be identified as a growth from early life, stability in early and middle adulthood, and decline in later life. This is the “gain-stability-loss” model. Life-span development does not necessarily follow this model. Change at any age can involve gains and losses and continues at each phase of the development cycle. It doesn’t necessarily mean that a person improves or worsens but develops differently than what they were at an earlier stage of development. Development is also influenced by age grades and norms which are handled differently among many cultures. It is a lifelong process that we can break down into three general domains of development: physical, cognitive, and psychosocial. These areas are different but influential of one another.

Physical development encompasses growth of the body and organs, the physical signs of aging, functioning of the brain, or the decrease or increase of motor skills in an individual. A decrease of brain function can be decreased due to injury or sickness. Cognitive development incorporates mental processes such as memory, language, perceptions, problem solving and learning. For instance, compare a simple question between a child and an adult. An adult’s answer could be more complex and defined as compared to a child’s answer which would be simple because of the difference in language development. Psychosocial development deals with areas in personal and social aspects such as emotions, personality traits, relationships and roles of individuals as they pertain to the family or society in general. Self esteem is an example of this development domain. Some school age children may have negative self esteem issues due to bullying at school or abusive parenting at home. Through positive reinforcement, coaching and mentoring a child can develop positive self...
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