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Lifespan Development in Context

Lifespan Development in Context
A Topical Approach

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January 2018 | 776 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Award-winning author Tara L. Kuther presents Lifespan Development in Context, a topically organized version of her bestselling Lifespan Development text that provides a panoramic view of the many influences that shape human development. Kuther’s student-friendly narrative illustrates how the places, sociocultural environments, and ways in which we are raised influence who we become and how we grow and change throughout our lives. Three core themes resonate throughout each chapter: the centrality of context, the importance of research, and the value of applied developmental science. Foundational theories and classic studies are combined with contemporary research and culturally diverse perspectives for a modern introduction to the field that is both comprehensive and concise. Visual overviews, case studies, and critical thinking questions encourage self-reflection and class discussion, ensuring students have the tools they need to apply course concepts to their lives and future careers. 

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Also of Interest: Case Studies in Lifespan Development by Stephanie M. Wright presents a series of 12 case studies shaped by the contributions of real students to build immersive examples that readers can relate to and enjoy. Bundle Case Studies in Lifespan Development with Lifespan Development in Context for only $5 more!

About the Author
Part I: Foundations of Development
1 Understanding Human Development: Approaches and Theories
What Is Lifespan Human Development?

Basic Issues in Lifespan Human Development

Theoretical Perspectives on Human Development

Research in Human Development

Ethical Issues in Research

Part II: Biological Development and Health
2 Biological and Environmental Foundations and Prenatal Development
Genetic Foundations of Development

Chromosomal and Genetic Problems

Heredity and Environment

Prenatal Development

Environmental Influences on Prenatal Development

3 Physical Development and Aging
Physical Development in Infancy and Childhood

Physical Development in Adolescence

Physical Changes in Adulthood

Eating and Exercise Over the Lifespan

4 Brain, Perception, and Motor Development
Brain Development

Motor Development

Sensation and Perception

5 Health
Common Health Issues in Infancy and Childhood

Common Health Issues in Adolescence and Emerging Adulthood

Common Health Issues in Adulthood

Dementia in Older Adulthood

Part III: Cognitive Development
6 Cognitive Change: Cognitive– Developmental and Sociocultural Approaches
Piaget’s Cognitive–Developmental Perspective: Cognition in Infancy and Early Childhood

Piaget’s Cognitive–Developmental Perspective: Cognition in Middle Childhood and Adolescence

Vygotsky’s Sociocultural Perspective

Cognitive Development in Adulthood

7 Cognitive Change: Information Processing Approach
The Information Processing System

Information Processing in Infancy

Information Processing in Childhood

Information Processing in Adolescence

Information Processing in Adulthood

8 Intelligence
Psychometric Approach to Intelligence

New Approaches to Intelligence

Development of Intelligence

Group Differences in IQ

Giftedness, Intellectual Disability, and Special Needs

9 Language Development
Foundations of Language

From Sounds to Symbols: Language Development in Infancy

Language Development Over the Lifespan

Perspectives on Language Development

Contextual Influences on Language Development

Part IV: Socioemotional Development
10 Emotional Development
Emotional Development in Infancy

Emotional Development in Childhood

Emotional Development in Adolescence and Adulthood



11 Self, Identity, and Personality




12 Moral Development
Moral Reasoning

Prosocial Behavior

Moral Socialization

Aggression and Antisocial Behavior

Religion and Spirituality

13 Gender and Sexuality
Gender Stereotypes, Gender Differences, and Gender Development

Influences on Gender Development

Emerging Sexuality

Sexuality and Sexual Activity

Part V: Contexts of Development
14 Social Relationships: Family and Peers
Social Transitions and Family Formation

Family Constellations


Family Relationships in Adulthood

Peer Relationships

15 School, Achievement, and Work
Early Childhood and Elementary Education

Secondary and Postsecondary Education

Achievement Motivation

Career Development, Work, and Retirement

Part VI: Endings
16 Death and Dying
Patterns of Mortality and Defining Death

Conceptions of Death Across the Lifespan

Dying and the Experience of Death

Bereavement and Grief



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·         EXCLUSIVE, influential SAGE journal articles tie important research and scholarship to chapter concepts to strengthen learning

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“An inclusive textbook that presents complex research information (current and classic studies) in ways that a general audience not familiarized with the discipline of developmental psychology can understand and relate. Very engaging!” 

Andrea Garvey
American River College

“Kuther has structured each chapter with sensitivity to the ways introductory level students are likely to think about this content. The textbook is more consistent than others available in offering cross-cultural research on each topic, and it provides many compelling conversation starters for class, including special topic boxes and questions for discussion.” 

Stacy DeZutter
Millsaps College

“An up-to-date text containing a wealth of resource viewpoints addressing contemporary issues written in a student-friendly manner.” 

Clark E McKinney
Southwest Tennessee Community College

“The videos cover a variety of important concepts in human development and they bring the textbook information to life. Human development is a lot of information to learn in a short time span so these are helpful in making it easier to learn.” 

Lakitta Johnson
Jackson State University

“I watched a few videos and believe that they are useful because they provide students with real-world applications. They can see constructs in context and in the real world which should provide them with the foundation to make more practical applications of course material.” 

Sue Kelley
Lycoming College
Key features


  • This title is available as a digital option through SAGE Vantage, an intuitive digital platform that offers auto-graded assignments and interactive multimedia tools, all carefully designed to ignite student engagement and drive critical thinking.
  • Chapter-opening Learning Objectives are aligned to Bloom’s taxonomy and matched with key digital resources curated and developed specifically to facilitate comprehension.
  • Lives in Context boxes provide rich examples of how we are all embedded in multiple layers of context, including family, culture, neighborhood, community, norms, values, and historical events.
  • Cultural Influences on Development boxes explore the role of context in diversity and the many forms that diversity takes, highlighting the importance of cultural influences in today’s changing world.
  • Applying Developmental Science boxes reflect the increasing relevance and influence of developmental science on contemporary issues influencing our lives.
  • Lifespan Brain Development boxes discuss cutting-edge studies that apply research to neurological development so students can see the importance of research in understanding human development.
  • What Do You Think? questions at the end of every boxed feature challenge students to assess and evaluate these issues and engage with the book’s core themes.
  • Thinking in Context critical thinking questions at the end of every section prompt students to compare concepts, apply theoretical perspectives, and consider applications of research findings.
  • Apply Your Knowledge case studies at the end of every chapter ask students to apply their understanding to address a particular situation or problem, reinforcing the book’s emphasis on application.
  • Robust pedagogical tools include key terms, summaries, end-of-chapter Review Questions, and visual overviews that allow students to easily revisit, review, and retain chapter content.
  • SAGE Premium Video brings concepts to life and appeals to diverse learners:
    • Dr. Kuther’s Chalk Talks are whiteboard-style animations narrated by the author that provide a foundational overview for students to learn basic concepts outside the classroom so that class time can be spent on active learning.
    • Lives in Context Video Cases with follow-up assessments spotlight individuals in every stage of the lifespan, allowing students to see theories of development through a culturally rich, real-world lens.
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ISBN: 9781506373409

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