Developmentally Instigative Person Model. Developmentally instigative person characteristics consist of two features, personal stimulus qualities and developmentally structuring attributes, neither of which have found extensive articulation in the special education literature. These two features are explicitly distinguished from purely physical factors, such as bodily characteristics (e.g., size), forms of organic injury (e.g., congenital anomalies or physical disabilities), and physical characteristics (i.e., age, sex, and race). In fact, Bronfenbrenner (1992) argued that the three physical characteristics should be distinguished in every study because of their powerful ability to influence the processes of development.
Personal stimulus qualities, the first personal feature, consist of personal characteristics that invite or discourage particular kinds of reactions from the environment that can either disrupt or foster the development of the child. These would include personality and temperament, characteristics such as fussy versus happy or socially responsive versus withdrawn, as well as physical characteristics, such as attractive versus unattractive (Bronfenbrenner, 1992). Developmentally structuring attributes, the second personal feature, have been identified by Bronfenbrenner as, perhaps, more potent than personal stimulus qualifies. These attributes can be characterized as involving "an active orientation toward and interaction with the environment" (p. 219). Examples of developmentally structuring attributes are infant initiations and maintenance of patterns of reciprocal interaction with the caregiver, intellectual curiosity, exploration of the environment, and "a conception of self as an active agent in a responsive world" (p. 219). For school-age children it can consist of peer social initiations or volunteering answers to teacher questions.
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