Do you want to be able to better understand your child?

Do you want to work effectively with children?
Child psychology is concerned with the development of a person over the course of their childhood. This involves the development of a child's mental processes (ie. cognitive development); emotional and social behaviour. It is important to state that development does not end at adulthood.  Adults continue to experience changes in their mental, emotional and social behaviours. Some characteristics are however more easily developed and changed during childhood.

People change and develop throughout their lives. Most remarkable are the changes that occur throughout childhood to adolescence. As children develop, they go through different stages. Different behaviours and abilities can be expected in different stages. Developmental theories identify the different stages of development, aiming to explain why a child will be likely to behave in a particular way. Having some knowledge about what to expect throughout a certain phase of a child’s life can help to distinguish between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour, and can also provide some guidance for the most effective and appropriate way for an adult to respond to the child. 

There are many aspects that influence the development of a child.  These aspects are generally catagorised in "nature" or "nurture" influences. Nature refers to those traits that have been handed down through heriditary, and nurture refers to the traits that have been developed from the way the child has interacted with their environment.

The nature vs nurture debate is on-going within the psychology community, and can be more accurately looked at by considering how much each contributes, and in what way nature and nurture affects development.

Nature and nurture often combine to create the end characteristics of the individual. Consider a child who is genetically physically attractive. Studies have shown that physically attractive children are treated more positively than less attractive children at school. This can give a greater self-worth, more attention so more chance to develop academically, and more confidence. The way the child is treated (an aspect of nurture) occurs in response to their physical appearance (an aspect of nature), so the resulting personality, behaviours, intelligence etc are created by a combination of nature and nurture.

Find out more in the e-book "How Children Think" written by ACS Staff


Study Child Psychology through ACS - click HERE
These courses may also interest you:
For all Psychology and Counselling courses, go HERE


Need Help?

Take advantage of our personalised, expert course counselling service to ensure you're making the best course choices for your situation.