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Palgrave Macmillan

Understanding Human Development

Biological, Social and Psychological Processes from Conception to Adult Life

ISBN 9781403933058
Publication Date February 2008
Formats Hardcover Paperback Ebook (PDF) 
Publisher Palgrave Macmillan


How does a fertilized egg become a person? How do the processes which shape the common features of human development also produce the rich variety of individual diversity? Understanding Human Development explores these questions in a lively and wide-ranging survey of the subject, offering both a topical and a chronological view of development. 
 
The author critically reviews research on human development from the earliest studies to the theories and issues of the 21st century, including recent breakthroughs in neuropsychology, cross-cultural psychology and in the application of dynamic systems theory. Coverage of methodology and ethics combined with thorough revision summaries in each chapter make this an invaluable introduction for students of developmental psychology. 

STEPHANIE THORNTON, formerly Senior Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Sussex, UK, has researched and taught on developmental psychology for over 25 years. Her research has covered a broad range of topics in social and cognitive development, with a particular focus on the mechanism through which new ideas and new understanding develop in children's minds. She is the author of Children Solving Problems (Harvard 1995) and Growing Minds (Palgrave 2002).



Studying Human Development
PART A: THE BEGINNING OF LIFE
Bodies and Brains
Infant Minds: Perception, Inference and Understanding in the First 18 Months
Growing Emotions: Social and Personal Development in the First 18 Months
PART B: COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENT FROM INFANCY TO ADULTHOOD
Language
Reasoning and Conceptual Understanding
Memory, Problem-Solving and Mechanisms of Cognitive Development
Individual Differences in Cognition
PART C: SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL DEVELOPMENT FROM INFANCY TO ADULTHOOD
Overview
Understanding Other People
Personality and Identity
Social Relationships
Prosocial and Antisocial Behaviour
A FINAL COMMENT
Toward a New View of Development

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Reviews

'Thornton deftly draws us into the many intellectual puzzles that confront developmental psychologists. She communicates a vivid sense of the discipline's major achievements, but without neglecting the complexities and caveats that a sophisticated understanding of the field requires.' – Mark Bennett, Professor of Development Psychology, University of Dundee, UK, Editor of Infant and Child Development
'This refreshing introduction successfully integrates a wide variety of literatures. Thornton has done an excellent job framing this text in terms of broad developmental questions, and has created a text that is both engaging and provocative.' – Jessica Giles, Assistant Professor of Psychological Sciences, Vanderbilt University, USA
'A thorough and truly accessible review of developmental psychology as it has unfolded over past two centuries. This text is a remarkable achievement.' – Catherine O'Hanlon, Lecturer in Developmental Psychology, Newcastle University, UK
'...a comprehensive and rigorous review covering not only the classic issues of cognitive and social development, but many more pragmatic topics...' - Pete Henshaw, SecEd (The Voice for Secondary Education)
'Given the range, scope and complexity of child and human psychological development, any textbook on this subject is a massive undertaking...Stephanie Thornton is to be congratulated on tackling this as a single author. Understanding Human Development covers topics in more depth, and more recent research is included. In addition, the style is more thoughtful, intelligent comments are made, and the complexities and uncertainties are made apparent to the reader. I think Understanding Human Development is a much better buy for UK students who want to produce better-informed essays.' - Times Higher Education Textbook Guide, May 2008
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