Developmental psychology includes issues such as the extent to which development occurs through the gradual accumulation of knowledge versus stage-like development, or the extent to which children are born with innate mental structures versus learning through experience. Many researchers are interested in the interaction between personal characteristics, the individual's behavior, and environmental factors including social context and their impact on development.
Goals of developmental psychology
Developmental psychologists study the changes that occur as development proceeds. They examine both the changes themselves, and what causes them. Thus, developmental psychology has two main goals.
The first is to describe the behavior at each point in the person's development—such as determining the age that babies begin to walk, the social skills of four year olds, and so forth.
The second is to identify the causal factors involved in producing changes in behavior—such as the importance of genetic or biological factors, the role of various experiences, and the influence of peers, parents, and others.
History of Developmental Psychology
The scientific study of