Psych Ch. 7

nonverbal encoding
the nonverbal expression of emotion; has led researchers to conclude that we are born with the capacity to display basic emotions
What age do mothers think babies express emotion?
almost all think that by the age of 1 month, their babies have expressed interest and joy; 84% of mothers think their infants have expressed anger, 75% surprise, 58% fear, and 34% sadness;
Maximally Discriminative Facial Movement Coding System (MAX)
developed by psychologist Caroll Izard; finds that interest, distrss, and disgust are presen at birth, and that other emotions emerge over the next few months;
Infants are born with what?
with an innate repertoire of emotional expressions, reflection basic emotional states such as happiness and sadness; as infants and children grow older, they expand and modify these basic expressions and become more adept at controlling their nonverbal behavioral expressions;
Infants expreince with emotions
although infants do appear to experience emotions, the range of emotions at birth is fairly restricted; as they get older, infants both display and experience a wider range of increasingly complex emotions
Cerbral cortex
the differentiation of emotions occurs here as it becomes operative in the first 3 months of lige; by the age of 9 or 10 months, the structures that make up the limbic system begin to grow
Limbic system
the site of emotional reactions; starts to work in tandem with the frontal lobes, allowing for an increased range of emotions;
stranger anxiety
the caution and wariness displayed by infants when encountering an unfamiliar person; such anxiety typically appears in the second half of the 1st year; infants tend to show less anxiety with female strangers and strangers who are children;
separation anxiety
the distress displayed by infants when a customary care provider departs; usually begins at about 7 or 8 months; peaks around 14 months, and then decreases; separation anxiety largely attributable to the same reasons as stranger anxiety;
Stranger anxiety and Separation anxiety
represent important social progress; they reflect both cognitive advances and social bonds between infants and their caregivers;
by 6 to 9 weeks babies begin to smile reliably at the sight of stimuli that please them, including toys, mobiles, and to the delight of parents people;
social smile
a baby’s smile in response to another person, rather than to non-human stimuli; as babies get older, their social smiles become directed toward particular individuals, not just anyone; by the age of 18 months, social smiling, directed more toward mothers and other caregivers, becomes more frequent than smiling directed toward non-human objects;
vocal expressions
infants seem to be able to discriminate vocal expressions of emotion at a slightly earlier age than they can interpret facial expressions; it does appear that they are able to discriminate happy and sad vocal expressions at the age of 5 months; infants learn early both to produce and to decode emotions, and they begin to learn the effect of their own emotions on others;
social referencing
the international search for information about others’ feelings to help explain the meaning of uncertain circumstances and events; used to clarify the meaning of a situation and so to reduce our uncertainty about what is occurring; occurs around 8 or 9 months;
knowledge of oneself; very young infants do no have a sense of themselves as individuals; self-awareness begins to grow at around the age of 12 months
self-awareness at 17 and 24 months
children begin to show awareness of their own capabilities;
theory of mind
knowledge and beliefs about how the mind works and how it influences behavior; theories of mind are the explanation that children use to explain how others think
compliant agents
beings similar to themselves who behave under their own power and who have the capacity to respond to infants’ requests;
starts at the age of 2; an emotional response that corresponds to the feelings of another person; at 24 months of age, infants sometimes comfort others or show concern for them;
the positive emotional bond that develops between a child and a particular, special individual; the nature of our attachment during infancy affects how we relate to others throughout the rest of our lives;
behavior that takes place during a critical period and involves attachment to the first moving objects that is observed
contact comfort
the preference for the warmth and contact
Ainsworth Strange Situation
consists of a sequence of staged episodes that illustrate the strength of attachment between a child and typically his or her mother;
secure attachment pattern
when a child uses their mother as the home base of comfort; although they may or may not appear upset when she leaves, securely attached children immediately go to her when she returns and seek contact;
avoidant attachment pattern
children who do not seek proximity to the mother, and after she has left, they typically do not seem distressed; some 20% of 1-year-old children are in the avoidant category;
ambivalent attachment pattern
children display a combination of positive and negative reactions to their mothers; ambivalent children are in such close contact with the mother that they hardly explore their environment; they appear anxious even before the mother leaves, and when she does leave, they show great distress; but when she returns, they show ambivalent reactions, seeking to be close to her but also hitting and kicking, apparently in anger; about 10% to 15% of 1-year-old fall into this classification;
reactive attachment disorder
psychological problem characterized by extreme problems in forming attachments to others; in young children, it can be displayed in feeding difficulties, unresponsiveness to social overtures from others, and a general failure to thrive; is rare and typically the result of abuse or neglect
interactional synchrony
caregivers respond to infants appropriately and both caregiver and child match emotional states; mothers typically respond to their infants based on their own attachment styles
Fathers and Attachment
a growing body of research has shown that father’s expressions of nurturance, warmth, affection, support, and concern are extremely important to their children’s emotional and social well-being;
attachment to mothers and fathers
is not identical; most fathers do contribute to child care; fathers engage in more physical, rough-and-tumble activities with their children; mothers play traditional games such as peekaboo and games with more verbal elements
mutual regulation model
through interactions infants and parents learn to communicate emotional states to one another and to respond appropriately; at the age of 3 months, infants and their mothers have about the same influence on each other’s behavior; by the age of 6 months, infants have more control over turn-taking, although by the age of 9 months both partners once again become roughly equivalent in terms of mutual influence
reciprocal socialization
infants’ behavior invite further responses from parents and other caregivers
serves as a social function and can also be a powerful teaching tool; as infants age, they begin to imitate each other
Meltzoff and his colleagues
say learning by exposure starts early in life;
mirror neurons
neurons that fire not only when an individual enacts a particular behavior but also when the individual simply observes another organism carrying out the same behavior; may help infants understand others’ actions and to develop a theory of mind;
the sum total of the enduring characteristics that differentiate one individual from another
According to Erik Erikson
infants’ early experiences are responsible for shaping one of the key aspects of their personalities: whether they will be basically trusting or mistrustful
Erikson’s theory of psychological development
consider how individuals come to understand themselves and the meaning of others’, and their own, behavior; suggests that development change occurs throughout people’s lives in eight distinct stages, the first of which occurs in infancy;
trust-versus-mistrust stage
during the first 18 months; infants develop a sense of trust or mistrust, largely depending on how well their needs are met by their caregivers;
feelings of trust
an infant experiences a sense of hope, which permits them to feel as if they can fulfill their needs successfully;
feelings of mistrust
lead infants to see the world a harsh and unfriendly, and they may have later difficulties in forming close bonds with others;
autononmy-versus-shame-and-doubt stage
lasts from around 18 months to 3 years; children develop independence and autonomy if parents encourage exploration and freedom within safe boundaries; if children are restricted and overly protected, they feel shame, self-doubt, and unhappiness; Erikson argues that personality is primarily shaped by infants’ experiences;
encompasses patterns of arousal and emotionality that are consistent and enduring characteristics of an individual; refers to how children behave, as opposed to what they do or why they do it; initially being largely due to genetic factors; temperament is not fixed and unchangeable;
activity level
reflects the degree of overall movement;
the nature and quality of an infant’s mood; another important dimension of temperament;
New York Longitudinal Study
Alexander and Stella Chess carried out a large-scale study of a group of infants;
New York Longitudinal Study levels
Easy babies, Difficult babies, and Slow-to-warm babies;
easy babies
babies with a positive disposition; their body functions operate regularly, and they are adaptable
difficult babies
babies with more negative moods and are slow to adapt to new situations; when confronted with a new situation, they tend to withdraw; about 10% of infants belong in this category;
slow-to-warm babies
babies that are inactive, showing relatively calm reactions to their environment; their moods are generally negative, and they withdraw from new situations, adapting slowly; approximately 15% of infants are slow-to-warm; as for the remaining 35%, they cannot be consistently categorized;
a babies particular temperament with the nature and demands of the environment in which they find themselves;
physiological reactivity
a characteristic of temperament that corresponds to the level of physiological reactivity that is exhibited in response to a novel stimulus;
inhibition to the unfamiliar
high reactivity exhibited as shyness;
refers to our sense of being male or female;
typically refers to sexual anatomy and sexual behavior, while gender refers to social perceptions of maleness or femaleness
gender roles
roles for males and females, but these roles differ greatly between cultures; by the age on 1 year, infants are able to distinguish between males and females;

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