PSY f341K • Controversial Issues in Development
1:00 PM-2:30 PM
This course explores a set of questions in developmental psychology that are currently under dispute. Rather than memorizing a set of facts about development, students will encounter opposing viewpoints. The issues under investigation have no right answer to memorize. Instead, students will examine the evidence that opposing camps offer for their positions. In the course of this analysis students should also become more familiar with the many ways that developmental psychologists go about answering basic questions such as: Is nature or nurture more important for developmental outcome? Or, Is it more accurate to describe change as continuous or as discontinuous? The topics may include: Daycare and developmental outcome Television viewing and violent behavior Children as eyewitnesses Ability tracking in schools and academic achievement Self esteem programs in the schools Methods for controlling delinquent adolescents Sex education programs in the schools Who should teach values to children These topics address a range of developmental periods and crosscut domains of social, cognitive and biological processes.
Students will be evaluated on their preparation for class discussions (submission of discussion questions & weekly quizzes), on their participation in small and large group discussion, and on their group presentations of pros and cons of controversial issues.
A reading packet will be required.