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An Introduction to Theories of Human Development
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An Introduction to Theories of Human Development



January 2004 | 368 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
"The book is well written and the theorists and their respective work are well-presented and clearly explained. . . . As a text dealing with the historical overview of major theorists and their work in human development over the last century or so, it is extremely strong and could be widely used in a variety of both undergraduate and graduate courses."

                                                   —Ann C. Diver-Stamnes, Humboldt State University

"In general, I found the websites and references listed at the end of each chapter to be very interesting and useful for taking students beyond what is in the text." —Jane Ledingham, University of Ottawa

"A fine choice for a classic theories course, and I believe that the level of presentation would be appropriate for advanced undergraduate or graduate students. . . . The up-to-date web sites at the end of each section are a definite plus. The choice of sites is excellent."


                                                                        —Cosby Steele Rogers, Virginia Tech

An Introduction to Theories of Human Development examines the development process, looking at the series of changes that occur as a result of an interaction between biological and environmental factors. Why might our behavior as an adult be so different from when we were infants? Why and how does one stage of development follow the next? Are the changes that we experience abrupt in nature or smooth and predictable? Author Neil J. Salkind reflects on such critical questions to help readers understand what happens along the way as one develops from infancy through later life.

This book provides a comprehensive view of the primary theoretical models of human development including those from the biological, psychoanalytic, behavioral, and cognitive developmental perspectives. Along with a brief discussion of a historical background for each of these approaches, An Introduction to Theories of Human Development examines the application of these theories to various aspects of human development, such as the effectiveness of early intervention, individual differences, adolescence, and sociobiology.

Features of this text:
  • A final, integrative chapter compares the various theories presented in the book using Murry Sidman's model of six criteria for judging a theory to help develop students' skills for critically assessing theory.
  • Classic approaches to understanding human behavior across the lifespan are also examined.
  • Pedagogical features such as chapter opening quotes, boxed highlights, key terms, a glossary, and websites for further reading enhance student understanding of everyday human behavior.

An Introduction to Theories of Human Development is an accessible text for advanced undergraduate students in the social and behavioral sciences including such fields as psychology, education, human services, nursing, sociology, social welfare, and human development and family studies.

 
PART ONE. AN INTRODUCTION & IMPORTANT IDEAS
 
1. An Introduction to the Study of Human Development
 
2. Trends & Issues in Human Development
 
PART TWO. THE MATURATIONAL & BIOLOGICAL APPROACHES
 
Arnold Gesell and the Maturational Model
 
4. The Importance of Biology: Sociobiology & Ethology
 
PART THREE. THE PSYCHODYNAMIC APPROACH
 
5. Sigmund Freud's Psychosexual Theory
 
6. Erik Erikson's Focus on Psychosocial Development
 
PART FOUR. THE BEHAVIORAL PERSPECTIVE
 
7. The Behavioral Models of Development
 
8. Social Learning Theory
 
PART FIVE. THE COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENTAL VIEW
 
9. Jean Piaget's Cognitive Model
 
10. Lev Vygotsky's Sociocultural Theory of Development
 
PART SIX. A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS
 
11. Comparing Theories of Human Development

“The book is well written and the theorists and their respective work are well-presented and clearly explained. . . . As a text dealing with the historical overview of major theorists and their work in human development over the last century or so, it is extremely strong and could be widely used in a variety of both undergraduate and graduate courses.”

 

Ann C. Diver-Stamnes
Humboldt State University

“In general, I found the websites and references listed at the end of each chapter to be very interesting and useful for taking students beyond what is in the text.”

 

Jane Ledingham
University of Ottawa

“A fine choice for a classic theories course, and I believe that the level of presentation would be appropriate for advanced undergraduate or graduate students. . . . The up-to-date web sites at the end of each section are a definite plus.  The choice of sites is excellent.”  

 

Cosby Steele Rogers
Virginia Tech

Overall, An Introduction to Theories of Human Development is an excellent introduction for students who are already grounded – or who at the very least intend to become grounded – in traditional ways of ‘doing science.’ It is clear and well structured, reader-friendly (including summary boxes, illustrations, highlights of important points, and employs jargon only where it is necessary – without oversimplifying or dumbing down), orients to up-to-date additional readings and web sites, and, not irrelevant for students, it is not too expensive

Michael Bamberg
Clark University

Students found this text beneficial to their research especially for their assessment work that linked to life stage development. It is a full comprehensive text that covers a wide arch of theories from Piaget to Chomsky.

Mr Daniel Patrick George Mullan
Department of Health & Caring, Oldham College
August 26, 2016

This book is an easy read covering the main theorists of human development - set out in easy to follow sections. Offering further reading at the end of each chapter. A relevant and detailed text - to support the essential reading on my units.

Miss Debbie James
Health , Central Bedfordshire College
July 3, 2016

Excellent layout and easy to follow text with up to date theories and web sites. This is an excellent book for learners who want a more advanced insight into human development.

Miss Sharron Stillyards
health and social care, northlindsey college
March 12, 2013

This provides the basic reading for students on the course and has been recommended to the library

Mrs Pamela Schultz
Interdiscipline , University Campus Suffolk
March 2, 2012

this module is not runnig this year due to change in the programm structure.

Ms Alicja Chmielowska
Social Sciences, Dublin Business School
October 8, 2011

The book would be more suitable for psychology students rather than social science students. The chapter with theories comparison can be usefull to prepare a review of different approaches in theories.

Ms Alicja Chmielowska
Social Sciences, Dublin Business School
October 8, 2011
Key features
  • A final, integrative chapter compares the various theories presented in the book using Murry Sidman's model of six criteria for judging a theory (introduced in chapter 1), thus helping students develop skills for critically assessing theory, guiding them toward the types of questions one should ask about theories and what kinds of answers one should expect.
  • Boxed highlights contain material that focuses on the applied nature of developmental theories to enhance student understanding of everyday human behavior in settings that students in applied majors (education, social work, counseling psychology, etc.) are likely to encounter and appreciate.
  • Pedagogical tools reinforce learning and assist in study and review:  chapter-opening quotes by famous psychologists, authors, and other historical figures that stimulate student interest; key terms that are boldfaced and defined in text and in a glossary at the end of the book; marginal comments that reiterate and emphasize important points; and in-text references to web sites that guide students to further exploration of a topic.
  • Chapters conclude with annotated lists of material to extend students' exploration of topics beyond the text:  suggestions of further readings and references to still more web sites on topics covered in each chapter intended to further inform the student about the nature of different theoretical positions.

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1. An Introduction to the Study of Human Development


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