Advances in child development and behavior (ADV CHILD DEV BEHAV )


Advances in Child Development and Behavior is intended to ease the task faced by researchers, instructors, and students who are confronted by the vast amount of research and theoretical discussion in child development and behavior. The serial provides scholarly technical articles with critical reviews, recent advances in research, and fresh theoretical viewpoints.

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    Advances in child development and behavior
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Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Over the past several decades, lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) parenting has grown more visible. Alongside this enhanced visibility, research on the experiences of LGB parents and their children has proliferated. The current chapter addresses this research, focusing on several main content areas: family building by LGB people, the transition to parenthood for LGB parents, and functioning and experiences of LGB parents and their children. In the context of discussing what we know about LGB-parent families, we highlight gaps in our knowledge and point to key areas that future research should aim to answer, including how race, ethnicity, social class, and geographic factors shape the experiences of LGB-parent families.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2014; 46:57-88.
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    ABSTRACT: Drawing from research on civic engagement and environmental commitment, we make a case for the processes inherent in how adolescents' ideas about the commons (those things that bind a polity together) develop. Engagement in the public realm with a plethora of perspectives and a goal of finding common ground is fundamental. Adolescents participate in the public realm through mini-polities (e.g., schools, community organizations). Practices in those settings can reinforce or challenge dominant political narratives. Special attention is given to the natural environment as a commons that transcends generations and to the opportunities in schools and in community partnerships that enable adolescents to realize their interdependence with nature and to author decisions about the commons.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2014; 46:33-55.
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    ABSTRACT: It is estimated that approximately 2 million children have been affected by military deployment, yet much of what is known about the adjustment of children experiencing a parent's combat deployment has emerged only within the past 5-10 years. The extant literature on associations of parental deployment and children's adjustment is briefly reviewed by child's developmental stage. Applying a family stress model to the literature, we propose that the impact of parental deployment and reintegration on children's adjustment is largely mediated by parenting practices. Extensive developmental literature has demonstrated the importance of parenting for children's resilience in adverse contexts more generally, but not specifically in deployment contexts. We review the sparse literature on parenting in deployed families as well as emerging data on empirically supported parenting interventions for military families. An agenda for future research in this area is proffered.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2014; 46:89-112.
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    ABSTRACT: Internalization and socialization are central constructs in developmental psychology for explaining and investigating how development happens through social interaction. There has been and continues to be much debate about how to conceptualize and investigate these processes. The ways in which internalization and socialization promote development have also been difficult to identify. The goal of this chapter is to offer a way of clarifying what happens during internalization and socialization by linking them to a clear conceptualization of development. The chapter first provides an overview of internalization and socialization theory and research. This review indicates that the focus on how development happens through social interaction has taken attention away from specifying the developmental changes that occur through social interaction. It is argued that understanding internalization and socialization can be enhanced by linking them to a clear definition of development, such as the one provided by organismic-developmental theory. According to organismic-developmental theory, developmental change is distinguished from any change that may occur over time. Rather, development is defined in terms of the differentiation and integration of action components in relation to cultural values and expectations for development. After explicating organismic-developmental theory's key claims, some implications of utilizing it for advancing an understanding of internalization and socialization are discussed. The chapter ends with suggestions for future research on internalization, socialization, and development.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2014; 46:1-32.
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    ABSTRACT: There is a pressing need to share advances in developmental science with the large, multidisciplinary professional workforce that serves vulnerable infants and toddlers and their families. Foundational knowledge and conceptual frameworks that integrate material regarding the contents and processes of early development and promotion of their use can assist interventionists and the families they serve. This chapter describes an approach that has been developed over the past 10 years and summarizes key contents with sample practical applications. Topic areas include developmental theories, newborn capacities, a model for synthesizing information about early social competence (including self-regulation, early relationships, social skills, and social cognition), and key current topics in developmental psychopathology. Brief considerations of diversity and stigma for work with young children and families are also included.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2014; 46:245-79.
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    ABSTRACT: Recently, much research has focused on causal graphical models (CGMs) as a computational-level description of how children represent cause and effect. While this research program has shown promise, there are aspects of causal reasoning that CGMs have difficulty accommodating. We propose a new formalism that amends CGMs. This edge replacement grammar formalizes one existing and one novel theoretical commitment. The existing idea is that children are determinists, in the sense that they believe that apparent randomness comes from hidden complexity, rather than inherent nondeterminism in the world. The new idea is that children think of causation as a branching process: causal relations grow not directly from the cause, but from existing relations between the cause and other effects. We have shown elsewhere that these two commitments together, when formalized, can explain and quantitatively fit the otherwise puzzling effect of nonindependence observed in the adult causal reasoning literature. We then test the qualitative predictions of this new formalism on children in a series of three experiments.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2014; 46:183-213.
  • Advances in child development and behavior 01/2014; 46:xi-xiv.
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    ABSTRACT: Learning and discovery seem often to begin with noting patterns. Human infants are skilled at pattern detection, even patterns only definable at an abstract level, which is key to their acquisition of complex knowledge systems such as language and music. However, research examining infants' abstract rule learning has generated inconsistent results. We propose that apparent domain differences in infants' abstract rule learning may be the result of extraneous stimulus variation and discrepancies in the methodologies employed across studies probing this skill. We discuss how a behavioral methodology indexing infants' online learning would be valuable in furthering understanding of infants' (as well as adults') abstract rule learning and its neurophysiological concomitants. We outline current research aimed at developing such an index, and we propose future research, pairing such techniques with neurophysiological methods, aimed at shining more light on human skill at discovering structure.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2014; 46:113-48.
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this chapter is to describe the vocabulary development and promising, evidence-based vocabulary interventions for English learners (ELs) from preschool through second grade. To achieve this purpose, we have taken six steps. First, we describe the elements of language development in the native language (L1) and a second language (L2) and how these elements relate to three phases of reading development (i.e., the prereading phase, the learning to read phase, and the reading to learn phase). We contend that in order for ELs to succeed in school, they need a strong language foundation prior to entering kindergarten. This language foundation needs to continue developing during the "learning to read" and "reading to learn" phases. Second, we describe the limitations of current practice in preschool for ELs related to vocabulary instruction and to family involvement to support children's language development. Third, we report curricular challenges faced by ELs in early elementary school, and we relate these challenges to the increase in reading and language demands outlined in the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Specific language activities that can help meet some of the demands are provided in a table. Fourth, we synthesize the research on evidence-based vocabulary instruction and intervention and discuss implications for practice with ELs. Fifth, we describe two intervention projects under development that have the potential to improve EL vocabulary and language proficiency in the early grades. We conclude with a summary of the chapter and provide additional resources on the topic.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2014; 46:281-338.
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    ABSTRACT: The range of responses made to environmental exigencies by animals, including humans, may be impacted by the experiences of their progenitors. In mammals, pathways have been documented ranging from transactions between a mother and her developing fetus in the womb through continuity of parenting practices and cultural inheritance. In addition, phenotypic plasticity may be constrained by factors transmitted by the gametes that are involved in the regulation of gene expression rather than modifications to the genome itself. Possible mediators for this kind of inheritance are examined, and the conditions that might have led to the evolution of such transmission are considered. Anticipatory adjustments to possible environmental exigencies are likely to occur when such conditions recur regularly, but intermittently across generations and endure for substantial periods of time, and when adjusting to them after the fact is likely to be biologically costly, even life-threatening. It appears that physical growth and responses to nutrient availability are domains in which anticipatory, epigenetically inherited adjustments occur. In addition, given the fact that humans have oppressed one another repeatedly and for relatively long periods of time, such behavioral tendencies as boldness or innovativeness may be behavioral traits subject to such effects. The implications of these factors for research and policy are discussed.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2013; 44:325-54.
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    ABSTRACT: According to recent claims from behavior genetics, executive function (EF) is almost entirely heritable. The implications of this claim are significant, given the importance of EF in academic, social, and psychological domains. This paper critically examines the behavior genetics approach to explaining individual differences in EF and proposes a relational developmental systems model that integrates both biological and social factors in the development of EF and the emergence of individual differences in EF. Problems inherent to behavioral genetics research are discussed, as is neuroscience research that emphasizes the plasticity of the prefrontal cortex. Empirical evidence from research on stress, social interaction, and intervention and training demonstrates that individual differences in EF are experience-dependent. Taken together, these findings challenge the claim that EF is almost entirely genetic but are consistent with an approach that considers biological differences in the context of social interaction.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2013; 45:39-66.
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    ABSTRACT: Since the early twentieth century, inheritance was seen as the inheritance of genes. Concurrent with the acceptance of the genetic theory of inheritance was the rejection of the idea that the cytoplasm of the oocyte could also play a role in inheritance and a corresponding devaluation of embryology as a discipline critical for understanding human development. Development, and variation in development, came to be viewed solely as matters of genetic inheritance and genetic variation. We now know that inheritance is a matter of both genetic and cytoplasmic inheritance. A growing awareness of the centrality of the cytoplasm in explaining both human development and phenotypic variation has been promoted by two contemporaneous developments: the continuing elaboration of the molecular mechanisms of epigenetics and the global rise of artificial reproductive technologies. I review recent developments in the ongoing elaboration of the role of the cytoplasm in human inheritance and development.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2013; 44:225-55.
  • Advances in child development and behavior 01/2013; 44:xvii-xix.
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    ABSTRACT: The growth of genome-wide and Candidate Gene Association Studies have elevated genetic causality in medicine and behavioral science. This chapter explores the concept of causality as it has been applied in genetic explanations and distinguishes the varieties of methods used to establish genetic causation. The essay ends with a cautionary note on applying genetic causation to complex human behaviors and neurocognitive abnormalities.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2013; 44:307-23.
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    ABSTRACT: Adolescents are commonly seen as irrational, a position supported to varying degrees by many developmentalists, who often appeal to recent research on adolescent brains. Careful review of relevant evidence, however, shows that (1) adults are less rational than is generally assumed, (2) adolescents (and adults) are categorically different from children with respect to the attainment of advanced levels of rationality and psychological functioning, and (3) adolescents and adults do not differ categorically from each other with respect to any rational competencies, irrational tendencies, brain structures, or neurological functioning. Development often continues in adolescence and beyond but categorical claims about adolescents as distinct from adults cannot be justified. A review of U.S. Supreme Court decisions concerning intellectual freedom, reproductive freedom, and criminal responsibility shows ongoing ambivalence and confusion about the rationality of adolescents. Developmental theory and research suggest that adolescents should be conceptualized as young adults, not immature brains, with important implications for their roles, rights, and responsibilities.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2013; 45:155-83.
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    ABSTRACT: Several large-scale searches for genes that influence complex human traits, such as intelligence and personality, in the normal range of variation have failed to identify even one gene that makes a significant difference. All previously published claims for genetic influences of this kind now appear to have been false positives. For more serious psychiatric and medical disorders such as schizophrenia and autism, several genes have been found where a rare mutation contributes to abnormal behavior, but in many instances they are de novo mutations not obtained from a parent. Despite the many disappointments in the search for genes influencing human behavior, the field of molecular genetics has made remarkable progress to the extent that several broadly applicable principles can now be affirmed. These principles show how development is regulated by networks of interacting genes that function in an environmental context. They invalidate several key assumptions of statistical genetic analysis that are made when estimating heritability. There is now a need to reform the teaching of genetics to our students and to restrict the funding of further searches for elusive genes that account for so little variance in normal behaviors.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2013; 44:285-306.
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    ABSTRACT: We examine developmental systems theory (DST) with two questions in mind: What does DST explain? How does DST explain it? To answer these questions, we start by reviewing major contributions to the origins of DST: the introduction of the idea of a "developmental system", the idea of probabilistic epigenesis, the attention to the role of information in the developmental system, and finally the explicit identification of a DST. We then consider what DST is not, contrasting it with two approaches that have been foils for DST: behavioral genetics and nativist cognitive psychology. Third, we distill out two core concepts that have defined DSTthroughout its history: epigenesis and developmental dynamics. Finally, we turn to how DST explains, arguing that it explains by elucidating mechanisms.
    Advances in child development and behavior 01/2013; 44:65-94.

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