Psychology Developmental area 2

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  • Psychology Developmental area 2
    • Developmentassumptions
      • People change and develop with age and experience.
      • Many of the biggest changes occur in childhood.
      • Development may be social, cognitive or biological
      • Human development is an interaction of the influences of nature and nurture as both are important in shaping behaviour.
    • Key theme
      • Moral development
        • The difference between good and bad
    • Kohlberg
      • Stage theory
        • Structural approach to moral development which is made up of invariant stages (stages that don't change)
      • Aims
        • 1. Investigate the development in moral reasoning throughout adolescence and early childhood.
        • 2. Investigate the extent to which any developmental changes are shown in a variety of cultural context.
      • Sample
        • 75 American boys
          • Androcentric sample
        • age10-16
        • Over a period of 12 years
      • Individual interviews
        • Every 3 year a individual interview was carried out. He presented his p's with several moral dilemmas
          • Moral dilemmas is a hypothetical issue or problem that the p has to produce an answer to (no right or wrong answer). K designed to measure 25 moral themes eg value of human life.
      • His study was cross sectional
        • compared children from different cultures and some from same culture but different ages.
        • Investigated morality in Mexico, Taiwan, Turkey, Canada, Uk and Malaysia
      • Questions used to assess level of morality
        • What should Heinz do ?
        • Should he let his wife die ?
        • Is it better to save the life of one important person than a lot of important people ?
      • Results
        • He found no difference between religions, whatever religious values a person had, they appeared to go through the same stages.
        • Development was quickest for middle class children, than lower class urban and village boys were the slowest to pass through the stages, although again the sequence of stages didn't vary,
          • Middle class developed the fastest because the spend more time being brought up with morals.
        • Different children moved through the stages differed depending on the social class setting.
        • Stage 5 was more common in American adolescents  but it was shown in enough cultures to demonstrate it wasn't a American phenomenon.
        • Development was a little slower in Mexico and Taiwan.
      • Conclusions
        • Confirmed the development sequence of 3 levels and 6 stages
        • Moral development occurs in the same sequence, ie an invariant developmental sequence in individuals moral development across all cultures. Each stage comes one at a time and an individual may stop at any given stage at any age.
        • The 6 stage theory is not significantly affected by widely ranging social, cultural or religious conditions. Only thing that's affected is the rate at which an individual progresses through the sequence.
      • Evaluation
        • Ethnocentrism
          • YES- Only used American boys is ethnocentric bias- interpreting reasoning within the constraints of an excising stage theory may involve using norms and values which arnt appropriate to other cultures.
          • Language issues may influence interpretation of moral reasoning.
          • Moral dilemmas presented to p's might be too culture bound to the USA.
        • Validity
          • Findings may be questionable since the use of moral dilemmas doesn't necessarily indicate how people will actually act in a given situation, merely how they will say they will act,
          • Extraneous variables may act to influence moral development. These factors were not controlled for.
          • The dilemmas themselves may have been testing something other than moral development, eg linguistic understanding or intelligence.
          • What people say may be influenced by demand characteristics or social desirability effects. Its difficult to see how a person could show a higher level of reasoning than they have, just to support the researchers aim, or to fit in with social expectations.
        • Link to debate- nature/ nurture
          • Culture has little or no effect other than determining the context of the reasoning. This contradicts the lie telling study by lee
          • NATURE- each individual follows an innate predetermined sequence of stages. This would support the nature side of the debate, with each stage developing as a result of maturation.
        • Psychology as a science
          • Scientific however extraneous variables not conrrolled
          • evidence subjectlively interpreted
          • Falsifiable and possible to prove the theory wrong
        • Links to area and perspective
          • Can be see as development. One assumption is people change with age and experience, passing through the set of stages in an unchanging order. Each stage requires a certain skill which allows an individual to move to the next stage.
        • Links to key theme
          • shows how the use of moral development changes over time with moral dilemmas
        • practical applications
          • promote consideration of ethical behaviour in school and the military.
          • It was proven that a child at stage 3 is unlikely to understand stage 5 or 6 arguments whereas they may understand and adopt stage 4 argument. This shows children need cognitive maturation for the arguments of others to have an effect on them.
    • Lee et al
      • Moral judgements
        • These are opinions a person can make when deciding whether an action is good or bad
      • Aim
        • To investigate cross cultural differences in children's understanding and moral valuations of lying. The study aimed to compare responses.
      • IV
        • Culture either Chinese or canadian
        • Age- 7,9,11
        • Type of story - physical or social
        • Behaviour in the story - prosocial or antisocial
      • The study
        • Experiment
          • QUASI- iv naturally occurring, age and culture
          • LAB- controlled setting- type of story, nature of story
        • Cross culture study
          • Carried out on Chinese and Canadian cultures
          • various of different ages
        • snapshot study
          • data collected from p's all in one go
      • Sample
        • Chinese
          • 7 year olds
            • 40 (20m and 20 f)
          • 9 years old
            • 40 ( 20m 20f)
          • 11 years old
            • 40 (20m and 20f)
        • Canadian
          • 7 Years old
            • 36 (20m 16f)
          • 9 year old
            • 40 (24m and 16f)
          • 11 year old
            • 32 (14m and 18f)
        • Chinese children requited from elementary school in Hangzhou
        • no information about family
        • Canadian children from middle class families
        • recruited from elementary school called Frederiction.
      • Procedure
        • For each cultural group, 1/2 the p's were randomly assigned to a social story condition and the other 1/2 to a physical story condition
        • Social story
          • actions of main character affecting other people
        • physical story
          • only physical objects
        • P's were individually read 4 different stories each( 4 social or 4 physical ) written to be familiar to children in both cultures
        • 2 stories were prosocial- involved child carrying out a good dead. The other 2 stories were antisocial- intentional bad dead involved
        • 2 of stories the child character lied when asked a question by the teacher in the story and in the others they told the truth.
        • The two questions asked were was what he or she did good or naughty? was what he/ she did truth telling or lying
      • Controls
        • same standard rating scale
        • instructions given were identical
        • materials measured moral judgement of lying/ truth telling were the same across all p's
      • Results
        • pro- social/ truth telling stories
          • No significant difference was found in how each culture rated the good deed.
          • The Chinese children rated the truth telling less positively as age increases (nurture evidence).
        • Pro-social/ lie telling stories
          • All Canadian children rated lying as negative
          • Chinese children rating lying more positively as age increased
        • Overall
          • Pro-social stories
            • generally Chinese children rated lie telling more positively than Canadian children.
            • Chinese children rated truth telling more negatively than Canadian children
          • Similar results were found for anti- social, truth telling stories and anti- social, lie telling stories
          • All children rated the anti- social behaviour as negative
          • All children rated truth telling about the anti social behaviour as positive
      • Type of data
        • qualitative
          • The reasons given the ratings
        • quantitative
          • The numbers on the 7 point rating scale
      • Evaluation
        • Ecological validity
          • Low- judging book characters actions is different to judging a real persons actions.
          • stories designed for children, as they were scenarios that p's would experience in day to day life eg scribbling in a library book
          • Lee should have asked children about own life but makes this less ethical as could cause harm
        • ethics
          • story content was child appropriate so is unlikely that children experienced distressed and harm
        • Validity
          • HIGH- easy for children to understand
          • HIGH- alternate good and naughty
        • Reliability
          • Materials same across all study to measure moral judgement
        • generalisability
          • ecologically valid
          • generalizable to both genders
          • LOW- culturally specific - Chinese and Canadian children

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