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Arts and Sciences Learning Objectives

Child Development

Educational Outcomes/Competencies: Child Development Majors

A. General Education Goals:

  1. Demonstrate ability to understand children, youth, and families from a variety of disciplinary (education, developmental psychology, public policy, etc.), cultural, contextual, and historical perspectives

  2. Demonstrate understanding of how theory influences description, evaluation, explanation, and practice

  3. Demonstrate ability to critically evaluate research on children, youth, and families

  4. Demonstrate ability to write and speak in ways that support analytic thinking (showing comparisons and contrasts, showing causality and mechanisms, showing multivariate data, integrating images, numbers, and diagrams, providing documentation)

  5. Demonstrate ability to work directly with children, youth, and agencies serving children and youth

  6. (For some, not all) Demonstrate ability to carry out research on applied issues and in ways that integrate research and practice

  7. Demonstrate knowledge, work, and commitment related to the Department's overall mission to contribute to a more just, caring, and inclusive society.

B. Discipline Specific Knowledge and Ability Goals:

  1. Apply basic information and facts to provide scholarly (detailed) descriptions of infants, children, and youth – their development (ways of thinking, relating, experiencing) and central phenomena associated with their development (separation distress in infancy, make-believe in the preschool years, cooperative friendships in late childhood, parent-adolescent relationships in adolescence, etc.)

  2. Demonstrate understanding of the lexicon of scientific terminology (attachment, resilience, scaffolding, systems, etc.) applied to infant, child, adolescent and family development – as well as understanding of the different meanings of key terms and concepts depending on context, approach, and theory

  3. Demonstrate understanding of the major theories of infant, child and adolescent development (cognitive-constructivist, socio-cultural, dynamic systems, ecological, etc.) – and how they work to describe, explain, and address applied issues (home-school connections among underserved populations, evaluating children with special needs, supporting children “at-risk”, etc.)

  4. Demonstrate understanding of the current empirical literature on infant, child, and adolescent development – and on applied issues pertaining to children, youth, and families' welfare (brain development and reading problems, adolescent development and teen motherhood, family systems and homeless families, etc.)

  5. Gain understanding of the major philosophies of and approaches to educating children (transmission, constructivist, socio-cultural, etc.)

  6. Demonstrate understanding of curriculum development to support a variety of lines of development in childhood (literacy, math, science, technology)

  7. Demonstrate understanding of central issues and topics pertaining to the treatment and education of children with special needs (inclusion, behavior management, individual education programs, etc.)

  8. Demonstrate understanding of the central issues and phenomena pertaining to underserved populations of children, youth, and families (poverty, English as a second Language, urban schools, etc.)

  9. Demonstrate understanding of central policy issues effecting children, youth, and families – as well as the processes creating and implementing policies

  10. Demonstrate understanding of scientific methods, data analysis (quantitative and/or qualitative), and special research issues (e.g., analyzing longitudinal data) for understanding child, adolescent, and family development

  11. Demonstrate understanding of the methods for evaluating children, youth, and families – and programs serving children, youth and families

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