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Developmental Plasticity: Behavioral and Biological Aspects of Variations in Development explores the behavioral and biological aspects of variations in development from a variety of theoretical viewpoints and research contexts. Topics covered include evolution and genetic variability; sensory bases of infant perception; and learning and ethology. The infancy of human learning processes is also discussed, along with epistemology and developmental psychology. Comprised of eight chapters, this book opens with a review of the broad evolutionary landscape and the specific genetic mechanisms implicated in biological and behavioral development. It then describes the sensory apparatus available to neonatal human beings and analyzes the similarities and differences between ethological theory and learning theory. Developmental plasticity is also examined in interdisciplinary contexts, while the acquisition of behavior patterns during early postnatal development is explored from a traditional learning theory point of view. The remaining chapters focus on the role played by asymmetry in general and by cerebral asymmetry in particular in the generation of individuality; cultural and biological instances of plasticity in development; and the barriers separating epistemology from developmental psychology and psycholinguistics. This monograph will be a useful resource for developmental psychologists and other professionals devoted to child development and learning, as well as those in the fields of genetics and behavioral and biological sciences.
List of Contributors
I Evolutionary and Genetic Background
1 Evolution and Genetic Variability
Contemporary Variability between Species
Sources of Variability
Variability within Species
Molecules and Variability
Developmental Variability within the Organism
II The Sensory Base
2 The Infancy of Human Sensory Systems
Prenatal Origins of Sensory Development
Sensory Bases of Infant Perception
III Learning and Ethology
3 Learning Theory, Ethological Theory, and Developmental Plasticity
Problems Raised by the Goal-Directedness of Behavior
Developmental Plasticity in the Perspectives of Learning and Instinct Theory
Evolution of Developmental Plasticity: Implications for the Analysis of Immediate Causation
The Confluence of Ideas: Emergence of Interest in Animal Perception
4 The Infancy of Human Learning Processes
The Pleasures of Sensation as Incentives for Infant Learning
The Infant as Learner
The Functions of Early Human Learning
5 Innate Programs for Perceptual Development: An Ethological View
Perceptual Adaptations to Local Conditions: Honeybees
Sensitive Periods for Perceptual Change: Chick Pecking
Imprinting and Perceptual Development: Birds
Configurational Features and Sign Stimuli: The Herring Gull
Innate Constraints on Vocal Imitation: Birdsong
Species-Specific Processing of Vocal Stimuli: Macaques
Color Vision, Naming, and Preferences
The Ontogeny of Speech Perception
Conclusions on the Ethology of Perceptual Development
IV Asymmetries and Variation
6 Lateralization and Its Implications for Variation in Development
The Origins of Asymmetry
Lateralization of the Brain
Development of the Hand-Brain Relationship
Sex Differences in Cerebral Asymmetry
V Epistemology, Theory, and Method
7 Development and Plasticity
Developmental Perspective and Plasticity
The Roles of Experience
Multimodal and Polyphasic Development
Theoretical and Methodological Implications of a Multimodal-Polyphasic Model
Cultural and Biological Instances of Plasticity in Development
8 Epistemology and Developmental Psychology
Does Mental Development Have a Unique Destination?
The Grounds for Skepticism about Any Universal Destination
The Need for an Alternative Approach
Alternative Developmental Destinations and Trajectories
- No. of pages:
- © Academic Press 1981
- 28th January 1981
- Academic Press
- eBook ISBN:
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