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What Is Developmental Psychology?

Decent Essays
Developmental psychology is an intriguing topic, a fundamental revolution on the view of children. What is developmental psychology? It is a scientific approach that explains how humans change over time, from childhood to adulthood. Childhood is the time of life during which vast changes occur, a vulnerable newborn seems different to an active 2-year-old. Before the early 1960s, the study of human development was determined by either accounts of the behavioural or psychological facts. Scientists studying development engrossed mainly on human beings (Emmerich, 1968) and they focused on the primitive years of life or, they would focus on the years surrounding adolescence. These periods were considered to be the sections of ontogeny where the…show more content…
Psychologists also did not predict that babies are capable of learning whilst in the womb. Although in recent years because of the innovative inventions, it has been possible to study the child whilst in the womb, aiding researchers to have a comprehensive image of the beginning of the developmental process. The prenatal period is a weakly understood stage of human development, in many societies newborns tend to be given the age of ‘zero’, implying that nothing significant has occurred before their birth however the prenatal period is a very important factor in human development. For example, it is the period which, starts as a single cell which then over a course of time ends as a newborn baby. (Hepper, 2002). It is only from the 1960’s has prenatal development been studied further as mentioned above, this essay will be discussing the key ways in which prenatal factors influence human…show more content…
After fertilization, 36 hours later the single-cell zygote rapidly divides, this cell division continues. As the cell is dividing it makes its way down the fallopian tube to the uterus, this takes around 3 to 4 days. As this happens the form of the fertilized egg changes to a fluid filled sphere (known as a blastocyst), which floats spontaneously in the uterus for a day or two. The cells around the blastocyst cluster on one side and form the embryonic disk, this is a thickened cell mass from where the baby will develop. The embryonic disk differentiates into two layers the upper layer (known as ectoderm) and the lower layer (known as endoderm), the upper layer will become the baby’s nails, hair, teeth sensory organs, the outer layer of skin and the nervous system (including the brain and spinal cord). Whereas the lower layer will become the digestive system, liver, pancreas, salivary glands and respiratory system. A middle layer (known as mesoderm) will also develop later developing the inner layer of skin, muscles, skeleton, and excretory and circulatory systems. During this stage the other parts of the blastocyst will form the nurturing and protective organs, for example, the placenta and umbilical cord. The embryo is connected to the umbilical cord which is also connected to the placenta the embryo receives its
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