Syllabus for PSY-211

DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY


COURSE DESCRIPTION

The study of the life span, the subject of  Developmental Psychology intrigues us all. Each of us, and everyone we care about, is constantly developing. We see development in childhood more readily because rapid changes take place in physical size, knowledge, and social interactions. Heightened public awareness of the problems of aging in our contemporary society has led to new information on the processes of growth and change taking place in middle and late adulthood as well. This course includes both scientific discoveries and personal insights.

COURSE OBJECTIVES

After completing this course, you should be able to:  

  1. Describe the life span as an ongoing developmental process, or set of processes, involving both continuity and change, by giving examples from the literature, including physical, social, cognitive, and personality development.
  2. Analyze different developmental events from the perspectives of the four major theories of development--cognitive, learning, psychoanalytic, and humanistic--and recognize those theories when used by others to analyze events.
  3. Explain how research contributes to the understanding of development.
  4. Identify important developmental concepts and apply these concepts in various situations.
  5. Formulate relevant questions about developmental processes and events, and use standardized techniques for gathering objective answers to these questions.

COURSE MATERIALS

You will need the following materials to do the work of the course. The required textbook is available from the college's textbook supplier, MBS Direct.

Required Textbook

  1. The Developing Person through the Life Span, 7th ed., by Kathleen Stassen Berger (New York: Worth, 2008). 

ISBN-13: 978-0-7167-6080-1

 

Study Guide

  1. Study Guide [to accompany The Developing Person through the Life Span, 7th ed.], by Richard O. Straub (New York: Worth, 2008).  

ISBN-13: 978-0-7167-6092-4

Additional Resource

  1. The textbook's companion website includes interactive exercises to help you review key concepts from the textbook. Resources include chapter outlines, quizzes, and Web links. To use some of these features, you must register with the site.

COURSE STRUCTURE

Developmental Psychology is a three-credit online course, consisting of eleven (11) modules. Modules include study materials and activities.

ASSESSMENT METHODS

For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete written assignments, and take two proctored examinations—a midterm and a final. See below for more details.

Consult the course Calendar for due dates.

Discussion Forums

In addition to posting an introduction to the class in Module 1, you are required to participate in five (5) graded online class discussions.

 

Communication with your mentor and among fellow students is a critical component of online learning. Participation in online class discussions involves two distinct activities: an initial response to a discussion question and at least two subsequent comments on classmates' responses. Meaningful participation is relevant to the content, adds value, and advances the discussion. Comments such as "I agree" and "ditto" are not considered value-adding participation. Therefore, when you agree or disagree with a classmate or your mentor, state and support your position. Remember, these are discussions. responses and comments should be properly proofread and edited, mature, and respectful.

Written Assignments

You are required to complete six (6) written assignments. The written assignments are on a variety of topics associated with the course modules.  Each assignment consists of four or five questions dealing with material from the textbook or Study Guide, and you are required to answer two (2) of these questions. Many students find it helpful to read over the assignment questions for a module before beginning the reading for the module.

Please answer the questions you choose as completely as possible. When you use material from your readings, be sure to cite it properly (i.e., using footnotes or endnotes). Do not merely copy answers from your reading materials. Formulate answers in your own words, citing text materials where it strengthens your answer.

Your answers to each question should be in the range of 500-700 words, or the equivalent of one to two typed, double-spaced pages. Be sure to look over your answers carefully before you transmit them. Be sure that you have answered completely all parts of each question. Check your final draft for accurate spelling, punctuation, and grammar. Make sure that all sentences are complete and that your paragraphs are appropriate.

Examinations

You are required to take two (2) proctored online examinations: a midterm and a final. The midterm covers material from Modules 1–5; the final covers all reading and assignments from Modules 6-11.  Both exams consist of identification and essay questions; are two hours in duration; and require that you use the College's Online Proctor Service (OPS). Please refer to the "Examinations and Proctors" section of the Online Student Handbook (see General Information area of the course Web site) for further information about scheduling and taking online exams and for all exam policies and procedures. You are strongly advised to schedule your exam within the first week of the semester.

 

Online exams are administered through the course Web site. Consult the course Calendar for the official dates of exam weeks.

Statement about Cheating

You are on your honor not to cheat during an exam. Cheating means:

  1. Looking up any answer or part of an answer in an unauthorized textbook or on the Internet, or using any other source to find an answer.
  2. Copying and pasting or, in any way copying responses or parts of responses from any other source into your exams. This includes but is not limited to copying and pasting from other documents or spreadsheets, whether written by yourself or anyone else.
  3. Plagiarizing answers.
  4. Asking anyone else to assist you by whatever means available while you take an exam.
  5. Copying any part of an exam to share with other students.
  6. Telling your mentor that you need another attempt at an exam because your connection to the Internet was interrupted when that is not true.

If there is evidence that you have cheated or plagiarized in an exam, the exam will be declared invalid, and you will fail the course.

GRADING AND EVALUATION

Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:

  1. Online discussions (5)—10 percent
  2. Written assignments (6)—40 percent
  3. Midterm exam (proctored online, modules 1–5)—25 percent
  4. Final exam (proctored online, modules 6–11)—25 percent

All activities will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:

A

=

93–100

C+

=

78–79

A–

=

90–92

C

=

73–77

B+

=

88–89

C–

=

70–72

B

=

83–87

D

=

60–69

B–

=

80–82

F

=

Below 60

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or better (for an area of study course) or D or better (for a nonarea of study course), based on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., exams, assignments, discussion postings, etc.).

STRATEGIES FOR SUCCESS

First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:

  1. Read carefully the entire Syllabus, making sure that all aspects of the course are clear to you and that you have all the materials required for the course.

  1. Take the time to read the entire Online Student Handbook. The Handbook answers many questions about how to proceed through the course, how to schedule exams, and how to get the most from your educational experience at Thomas Edison State College.

  1. Arrange to take your examination(s) by following the instructions in this Syllabus and the Online Student Handbook.

  1. Familiarize yourself with the learning management systems environment—how to navigate it and what the various course areas contain. If you know what to expect as you navigate the course, you can better pace yourself and complete the work on time.

  1. If you are not familiar with Web-based learning be sure to review the processes for posting responses online and submitting assignments before class begins.

Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:

  1. To stay on track throughout the course, begin each week by consulting the course Calendar. The Calendar provides an overview of the course and indicates due dates for submitting assignments, posting discussions, and scheduling and taking examinations.

  1. Check Announcements regularly for new course information.

ACADEMIC INTEGRITY

Students at Thomas Edison State College are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.

Academic Dishonesty

Thomas Edison State College expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the College insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty takes the following forms:

  1. Cheating
  2. Plagiarizing (including copying and pasting from the Internet without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources)
  3. Fabricating information or citations
  4. Facilitating acts of dishonesty by others
  5. Unauthorized access to examinations or the use of unauthorized materials during exam administration
  6. Submitting the work of another person or work previously used without informing the mentor
  7. Tampering with the academic work of other students

Academic dishonesty will result in disciplinary action and possible dismissal from the College. Students who submit papers that are found to be plagiarized will receive an F on the plagiarized assignment, may receive a grade of F for the course, and may face dismissal from the College.

A student who is charged with academic dishonesty will be given oral or written notice of the charge. If a mentor or College official believes the infraction is serious enough to warrant referral of the case to the academic dean, or if the mentor awards a final grade of F in the course because of the infraction, the student and the mentor will be afforded formal due process.

If a student is found cheating or using unauthorized materials on an examination, he or she will automatically receive a grade of F on that examination. Students who believe they have been falsely accused of academic dishonesty should seek redress through informal discussions with the mentor, through the office of the dean, or through an executive officer of Thomas Edison State College.

Plagiarism

Using someone else's work as your own is plagiarism. Although it may seem like simple dishonesty, plagiarism is against the law. Thomas Edison State College takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing will be severely penalized. If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > "Citing Sources.")

Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else's. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.

Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.

Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself

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