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What is Developmental Psychology?

grandfather and grandson playDevelopmental psychology is the scientific study of the age-related changes that occur over the course of the human lifespan. Although early developmental theorists were mainly concerned with children, the focus of this field has now expanded to include changes over the entire human lifespan from conception to death. Developmental psychologists study various domains of development,  including physical, emotional, cognitive, moral, personality and social change. Although in theory, these domains can be viewed as separate, they all influence and are influenced by each other. Developmental psychologists therefore investigate ways in which these areas of development interact, resulting in more complex patterns of change. For example, physical development during the adolescent years can result in emotional changes (e.g. reduced or heightened self-confidence) which could in turn, affect one’s pattern of social interaction. Continue reading