Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Development Across the Lifespan

LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course


DEPARTMENT Counselling

DESCRIPTION This study-unit is an exploration of lifespan development, from the womb to the end of life, through an understanding of the physical, social, emotional and cognitive growth and development that takes place. Prominence will be given to the acquisition of an extensive conceptual understanding of the developmental challenges faced by infants, children, adolescents, adults and the elderly with an emphasis on attaining wellness. Importance will also be given to the trainee’s awareness and understanding of their own developmental processes, as well as the cultural differences and commonalities that transpire in these processes. In order to promote self-awareness of the trainees own emotional development and to gain an understanding of other people's emotional states across the lifespan, the concepts of Emotional Intelligence and Emotional Literacy will be explored. The theory behind Emotional Intelligence and emotional literacy and their importance in terms of performance and quality of life will be presented.

Study-unit Aims:

- Gain an understanding of reputable developmental theories;
- Experience the application of developmental theories to counselling situations;
- Understand which developmentally based strategies facilitate wellness in human development;
- Develop an awareness of how one’s own developmental processes influence one’s personhood and life experiences;
- Develop an awareness as to how culture impacts development;
- Introduce Emotional intelligence within the Multiple intelligence framework;
- Help students understand their own emotional literacy and how this affects their personal and professional life.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Demonstrate an understanding of the basic tenets of developmental theories;
- Apply developmental theories to counselling situations;
- Identify strategies that facilitate wellness in human development;
- Articulate an awareness of how their own developmental processes have influenced their personhood and life experiences;
- Demonstrate awareness of how culture impacts development;
- Explain the Emotional Intelligence Model and Emotional Literacy.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Use developmentally based strategies to facilitate wellness in human development;
- Communicate how their own developmental processes and life experiences are linked to professional life through the keeping of a reflective journal;
- Promote a developmental perspective to client situations in the context within which they are operating;
- Use developmentally based theories to conceptualise human distress;
- Demonstrate how emotional literacy affects health and wellbeing.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

Main Texts:

Handouts will be given periodically

- Bowlby, J. (1988) A Secure Base: Parent-Child Attachment and Healthy Human Development. Routledge: London.
- Krauss Whitbourne, S. & Whitbourne, S. B. (2011). Adult development and ageing:Biopsychosocial Perspectives (4th Ed). Sussex: Wiley.
- Newman, B. & Newman, P. (2012). Development through life: A psychosocial approach (11th Ed). USA Thompson Learning: International Student Edition.

Supplementary Readings:

- Baltes, P.B. & Baltes, M.M. (Eds). (1990). Successful aging: Perspectives from the behavioral sciences. New York: Cambridge University Press.
- Barker, P. (1997). Basic child psychiatry. London: Blackwell.
- Coleman, J.C., & Hendry, L. (1990). The nature of adolescence. London: Routledge.
- Dryfoos, J. (1990). Adolescents at risk: Prevalence and prevention. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Fergusson, D.M., & Mullen, P. (1999). Childhood sexual abuse: An evidence based perspective. Thousand Oaks: C.A Sage.
- Gatz, M. et al (1997). Aging and mental disorders. In J., E. Birren & K., W. Schaie (Eds). Handbook of the psychology of ageing (4th edition). San Diego: Academic Press.
- Goodger, I. (1995). The depressed child and adolescent: Developmental and clinical perspectives. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- Guralrick, M.J. (1997). The effectiveness of early interventions. Baltimore: Paul 4 Books.
- Hayflick, L. (1994). How and why we age. New York: Ballantine Books.
- Heaven, P. (2001). The social psychology of adolescence. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
- Hower, D., Brundon, M., & Hinings, D. (1999) Attachment theory, child maltreatment and family support: A practice and assessment model. Basingstoke: Macmillian.
- Hummert, J. et al (1994). Stereotypes of the elderly held by young, middle-aged and elderly adults. Journal of Gerontology, Psychological Sciences, 240-249.
- Karp, C.L., Bulter, T.L, & Bergstrom, S.C. (1998). Treatment strategies for abused adolescents. London: SAGE.
- Kerrilmann, N. (1997). Parasuicide. Wiley: Chicester.
- Lachman, M.E. et al (1992). Improving memory and control beliefs through cognitive restructuring and self-generated strategies. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, 47:293-299.
- Lask, B., & Bryant-Waugh, R. (1993). Childhood onset Anorexia Nervosa and related eating disorders. Sussex: Lawerence Erlbaum Associates.
- Levenson, D. J. et. al. (1978). The Seasons of a Man’s Life. New York: Ballantine.
- Ling, N.J., Hamilton, I.D., & Dilendrick, J.H. (1994). Children's phobias. West Sussex: Wiley.
- Maslow, A. (1968). Toward a Psychology of Being. New York: Van Nostrand.
- McCrae, R.R. et al (1999). Age differences in personality across the adult life-span: Parallels in five cultures. Developmental Psychology, 35:466-477.
- Meeks, S. & Murrell, S. (1997). Mental illness in late life: Socioeconomic conditions, psychiatric symptoms and adjustment of long-term sufferers. Psychology and Aging, 12: 296-308.
- Mensels, S., & Shonkoff, J. (Eds). (1995). Handbook of early childhood interventions. London: Clif.
- Mroczek, D.K. & Kolarz, C.M. (1998). The effect of age on positive and negative affect: A developmental perspective on happiness. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 75:1333-1349.
- Nelson, E.A. & Dannefer, D. (1992). Aged heterogenity: Fact or fiction? The fate of diversity in gerontological research. Gerontologist, 32:17-23.
- Reder, P., & Lucey, C. (1995). Assessment of parenting: Psychiatric and psychological contributions. London: Routledge.
- Schaie, K.W. (1994). The course of adult intellectual development. American Psychologist, 49:304-313.
- Sharman, W. (1997). Children and adolescents with mental health problems. London: Bailliere Tindall.
- Snowdon, D.A. (1997). Ageing and Alzheimer’s Disease: Lessons from the Nun Study. Gerontology, 37: 150-156.
- Stevenson, O. (1998). Child neglect: Issues and dilemmas. London: Blackwell.
- Siegal, D. (2012) The Developing Mind: How Relationships and the Brain Interact to Shape Who We Are. Guilford Press: NY.
- Zucker, K.J. & Bradley, S.J. (1995). Gender identity disorders and psychosexual problems in children and adolescents. New York: Gouldford Press.

ADDITIONAL NOTES Trainees are expected to attend all the lectures and prepare themselves by completing assigned readings prior to the respective lecture.


Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment Yes 50%
Examination (2 Hours) Yes 50%

LECTURER/S Roberta Attard (Co-ord.)
Niamh Donoghue
Ruth Falzon

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It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2019/0, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.