SCHOOL OF HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES
DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHOLOGY
UNIT CODE: APS 106
LECTURER’S NAME: Ms ESTHER GACHARA
TASK: LIFE CYCLE DEVELOPMENT IS DETERMINED IN THE WOMB. DISCUSS DATE DUE:
ORWA WINNIE ROSE AUMAC77/3728/2011
MUTAHI JOAN WANGARI C77/3210/2012
NJUGUNA MARY NJOKI C77/3176/2012
MWANGI ROSEMARY WANJIRU C117/2884/2012
KIBERA TABITHA SUSAN WANJIKU C77S/17253/2011
MBUGUA WANGUI RUTHC117S/17503/2011
MUNIRA ALI KC117S/13590/2012
Lifecycle or lifespan development is the field in psychology that studies how people change with time. These changes could be biological, including body changes and motor skills; cognitive, including thought and language; and psychosocial, including emotions, personality and relationships with other people. Life cycle development starts in the womb at conception and continues throughout the individual’s life. Other important stages of development are; birth, infancy, adolescence, adulthood, old age and finally death. Though some aspects of development may be strongly influenced by how the fetus develops in the womb, the genes one receives from his/her parents interact with the environmental factors after the individual is born such as the food one eats, parenting, experiences, friends, family relationships, culture and school. All this help us understand the influences that help contribute to growth and development. Our genes are the bio-chemical units of heredity that make each of us a distinctive human being. The genes we share make us people rather than dogs or tulips. But might our individual genetic make-ups explain why one person is outgoing, another is shy, or why one person is slow-witted while another is smart? Some developmental psychologists focus on explaining how our genetic background can determine not only how we look, but also how we behave, how we relate to others i.e. matters of personality. These professionals explore ways to identify how much of our potential as human beings is provided or limited by heredity. In this article we'll take a closer look at how biological influences (genes) help shape individual development. We'll learn more about how genetic disorders can impact one’s psychology and development and also how our experiences interact with genetics. Lastly we’ll learn on ways to take care of a child while in the womb and after to ensure they reach their maximum genetic potential.
How Biological Influences Determine Development.
Development begins at that moment when chromosomes in the sperm and ovum join together in the fallopian tubes to form 23 pairs in an entirely new cell called a zygote. Chromosomes are composed of molecules of DNA containing the genes. Genes are pieces of genetic material that control or influence traits. It is these genes that will guide cell activity for the rest of the individual’s life. A gene controlling some specific characteristic always appear in the same place (the locus) on the same chromosome in every individual of the same species. For example, the locus of the gene that determines whether a person’s blood is type A, B or O is on chromosome 9. Genes also determine the nature and function of every cell in the body. For instance, they determine which cells will ultimately become part of the heart and which will become part of the muscles of the leg. It is the genes that establish how different parts of the body will function; how rapidly the heart will beat, or how much strength a muscle will have. The genetic instructions passed down from both parents’ influence how an individual develops and the traits they will have. Combinations of genes from the father in the sperm and from the mother in the ovum create a unique genetic blueprint the genotype- all of the genes that a person has inherited-that characterizes that specific individual. The actual expressions...