Discuss the Extent to Which Developmental Psychology Has Been Able to Contribute to Improving Children’s Lives.

1048 Words Mar 13th, 2012 5 Pages
This essay will explore how developmental psychology has improved the lives of children diagnosed with specific learning difficulties (SpLD). It will explore how these improvements have been made from diagnosis to assessments, consequences to intervention.
Dyslexia refers to a specific difficulty in learning to read and write. However this is not the only difficulty that children with dyslexia experience and there are variations of their symptoms. These problems appear to stem from fundamental difficulties in the rapid processing and sequencing of phonological information in short term memory. These children also have difficulties with associations with letters and their sounds. Learning their left from right also is difficult. In the
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It is possible that two people with the same atypical brain development may present with differing symptoms as a result of the influence of environmental factors. As a result it is difficult to identify a single biological cause for SpLD. Developmental psychologists have been able to identify a range of factors that appear to contribute to the causes of SpLDs.
Heritability may be another factor which influences the presentation of SpLDs. Dyslexia and dyspraxia both appear to have a familial form where parents and siblings also present with these conditions. The extent of heritability has been highlighted through the use of twin studies; both monozygotic and dizygotic. Stevenson (1999) found that heritability was between 46 and 74 per cent chance, which highlights there is some influence from environment as well as genetic factors. Further research has highlighted how some genes on the chromosome are associated with phonological processing and other genes on other chromosomes are associated with reading.
Assessments are a key way developmental psychologists are able to further understand children with SpLD, and can then identify and conclude the severity of the SpLD. It is through assessment that developmental psychologists can start to do the most help with improving childrens lives. By assessing them for their SpLD the psychologist can start to make way for the child to gain extra support in school