Development and Learning: Birth to 14
Winter 2015 and Spring 2015 quarters
This two-quarter program is designed for those interested in exploring the many factors that affect how people become who they are. It is for students who wish to understand more about development and learning, including those who wish to pursue a career in teaching. Participants will explore neurological, social, cognitive, linguistic, and literacy development in children from birth to 14 years of age. They will also examine the implications of “neurotypical” and “neurodiverse” development for individuals, their parents, and their teachers. Neurotypical individuals are those whose development falls within current norms specified by society, psychologists, and medical doctors; neurodiverse individuals are those whose development does not conform to stated norms but who exhibit their own unique strengths, gifts, and challenges.
Winter quarter, guiding questions include: (i) What factors shape human development? (ii) How does language develop and affect the learning process? (iii) What are the similarities, differences, and influences of first and second language on development? (iv) What roles do societal norms and expectations play in the expression of development in children’s lives?
Spring quarter, guiding questions include: (i) How are neurotypical and neurodiverse individuals alike and different? (ii) How does public schooling impact development of children who are neurotypical and neurodiverse, particularly in the area of literacy acquisition? (iii) How might we advocate for diverse learners? (iv) How is oral language acquisition related to literacy acquisition and how do we evaluate reading development in children?
By the conclusion of this two-quarter program, students will be able to: explain how neuro-typical and neuro-diverse humans develop based on a variety of theoretical perspectives and on research about the functions and development of the brain; compare, contrast, and critique a minimum of three theories about some aspect of human development; describe the strengths and challenges of neurodiverse development; explain the relationships of language development, literacy acquisition, and learning; document and assess stages of language development; provide research-based suggestions of how to support the acquisition of English for students who are second language learners; assess children’s understanding of and approaches to making sense of printed text; successfully complete group and individual research projects and use current web-based technologies to support program presentations.
Program activities include interactive lectures and workshops, seminars, weekly writing, individual and small group investigations and presentations, and final written assessments. All class work will be submitted electronically.
Fields of Study
Preparatory for studies or careers in
Location and Schedule
Offered during: Day