Promoting Development: The Foundations

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To prepare for this Discussion: Part one Contexts of Development

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  • Think about the circumstances and context of your life or the life of someone you know who is approximately your same age. Then, think of another person within the same family who is at least two generations older—such as a grandparent. Now, take a moment to contrast the circumstances and context of the younger person’s life with those of the older adult you have selected. Keep these thoughts in mind as you continue the Discussion.
  • Consider how the development of each person you identified was influenced by their culture/community, ethnicity/race, socioeconomic status, society/policy, and historical contexts/cohort. Which of these influences had the greatest impact on the lives you are considering?
  • Think carefully about the differences in cultural norms, as well as the daily life experiences of the times.
  • Think, too, about what was most different about these contexts for the people you selected.

For part one with these thoughts in mind by day 2:

Post an analysis of the development of the two people you selected, in terms of what influenced their development (and thus their lives) and in terms of what could and could not have been changed. Begin with a brief description of the two people and their relationship. Then, for each person, provide one example of the contextual factors of development that had the most profound influence on each of their lives. Finally, summarize the development of the people in the two generations in terms of the influences that they could and could not change, in order to improve the quality of their lives.

To prepare for this Assignment: Part two Threats to Development

  • Read about PKU on the University of Washington, Seattle, PKU Clinic website.

  • Think about known teratogens and potential genetic disorders that may have touched your life or the life of someone you know in some way.
  • Choose one teratogen and one genetic disorder that you would like to examine for this Assignment.

The Assignment (2–3 pages):

Keeping PKU in mind as an example. Do not use PKU as one of your example and respond to the following:

  • For the teratogen:
    • Briefly describe the teratogen and the circumstances surrounding it; that is, how you know about it/your relationship to it, if any.
    • In your experience, was this teratogen avoidable? If so, why was it not avoided?
    • Are there contextual issues that make it more or less likely to be able to avoid it? Which ones, and why?
    • Once the teratogen affects the fetus, what can be done after birth to make the course of life more positive?
  • For the genetic disorder:
    • Briefly describe the genetic disorder and the circumstances surrounding it; that is, how you know about it/your relationship to it, if any.
    • Once the genetic disorder occurs, what can be done differently for the person or in the person’s life to make the course of life more positive?
    • Are there contextual issues (i.e., socioeconomic status, culture, or cohort) that make it more or less likely that changes will occur in order to improve life? Which issues, how, and why?

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