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How Children Develop


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The authors you trust. Now with a whole new interactive experience.

How Children Develop has established itself as the topically organised textbook teachers and researchers trust for the most up-to-date perspectives on child development. The authors, each a well-known scientist and educator - have earned that trust by introducing core concepts and impactful discoveries with an unparalleled integration of theory, cultural research, and applications, all in a style that is authorative yet immediately understandable and relevant to students.

The new edition has been rigorously updated and welcomes co-author Elizabeth Gershoff (The University of Texas at Austin), who brings a breadth of research and teaching experience to the discussions of social and emotional development. It is also more interactive than ever before, with richer integration between the book and its interactive study features in LaunchPad.


Robert Siegler is the Teresa Heinz Professor of Cognitive Psychology at Carnegie Mellon University. He is author of the cognitive development textbook Children`s Thinking and has written or edited several additional books on child development. His books have been translated into Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Spanish, French, Greek, Hebrew, and Portuguese. In the past few years, he has presented keynote addresses at the conventions of the Cognitive Development Society, the International Society for the Study of Behavioral Development, the Japanese Psychological Association, the Eastern Psychological Association, the American Psychological Society, and the Conference on Human Development. He also has served as Associate Editor of the journal Developmental Psychology, co-edited the cognitive development volume of the 2006 Handbook of Child Psychology, and served on the National Mathematics Advisory Panel from 2006 to 2008. Dr. Siegler received the American Psychological Association`s Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award in 2005, was elected to the National Academy of Education in 2010, and was named Director of the Siegler Center for Innovative Learning at Beijing Normal University in 2012.

Jenny R. Saffran is the College of Letters & Science Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and an investigator at the Waisman Center. Her research is focused on learning in infancy and early childhood, with a particular focus on language. Dr. Saffran currently holds a MERIT award from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. She has been the recipient of numerous awards for her scientific research, including the Boyd McCandless Award from the American Psychological Association for early career contributions to developmental psychology, and the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers from the National Science Foundation.

Nancy Eisenberg is Regents` Professor of Psychology at Arizona State University. Her research interests include social, emotional, and moral development, as well as so-cialization influences, especially in the areas of self-regulation and adjustment. She has published numerous empirical studies, as well as books and chapters on these topics. She has also been editor of Psychological Bulletin and the Handbook of Child Psychology and was the founding editor of the Society for Research in Child Development journal Child Development Perspectives. Dr. Eisenberg has been a recipient of Research Scientist Development Awards and a Research Scientist Award from the National Institutes of Health (NICHD and NIMH). She has served as President of the Western Psychological Association and of Division 7 of the American Psychological Association and is president-elect of the Association for Psychological Science. She is the 2007 recipient of the Ernest R. Hilgard Award for a Career Contribution to General Psychology, Division 1, American Psychological Association; the 2008 recipient of the International Society for the Study of Behavioral Development Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award; the 2009 re-cipient of the G. Stanley Hall Award for Distinguished Contribution to Developmental Psychology, Division 7, American Psychological Association; and the 2011 William James Fellow Award for Career Contributions in the Basic Science of Psychology from the Association for Psychological Science.

Judy DeLoache is the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Psychology at the University of Virginia. She has published extensively on aspects of cognitive development in infants and young children. Dr. DeLoache has served as President of the Developmental Division of the American Psychological Association, as President of the Cognitive Development Society, and as a member of the executive board of the International Society for the Study of Infancy. She has presented major invited addresses at professional meetings, including the Association for Psychological Science and the Society for Research in Child Development. Dr. DeLoache is the holder of a Scientific MERIT Award from the National Institutes of Health, and her research is also funded by the National Science Foundation. She has been a visiting fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences in Palo Alto, California, and at the Rockefeller Foundation Study Center in Bellagio, Italy. She is a Fellow of the National Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2013, she received the Distinguished Research Contributions Award from the Society for Research in Child Development and the William James Award for Distinguished Contributions to Research from the Association for Psychological Science.

Table of Contents

  • 1. An Introduction To Child Development
  • 2. Prenatal Development and The Newborn Period
  • 3. Biology and Behavior
  • 4. Theories of Cognitive Development
  • 5. Seeing, Thinking, and Doing Infancy
  • 6. Development of Language and Symbol Use
  • 7. Conceptual Development
  • 8. Intelligence and Academic Achievement
  • 9. Theories of Social Development
  • 10. Emotional Development
  • 11. Attachment to Others and Development of Self
  • 12. The Family
  • 13. Peer Relationships
  • 14. Moral Development
  • 15. Gender Development
  • 16. Conclusions

Review Quotes

I think this text is the best available for an advanced developmental psychology course. Strengths include organisation and in-depth content.
- Christin Ogle, American University

The strongest aspect of the book is the breadth of topics covered and the emphasis on core developmental themes, which are notably absent from many introductory texts.
- Elisa Esposito, Widener University

This continues to be my choice for a developmental textbook. I would describe this text as representing the most up-to-date developmental science of any on the market. I would also describe the examples, art/photos, tables and graphs, and corresponding lecture slide material to be excellent.
- Jeffrey Gagne, University of Texas at Arlington

I think this text is well written in an easy-to-understand format. I think the topics were thoroughly covered and included a lot of recent research. The pictures provided enhanced the understanding of the text. The tables provided summaries of the information that made it easier to understand.
- Joan Henley, Arkansas State University

The strengths of this text are its clear exposition, breadth of information, and its topics-based approach.
- Martin Lampert, Holy Names University

This textbook is engaging, easy to read and contains current research and the necessary foundational research. In addition, the pedagogy is diverse and well placed in the text.
- Renia Brown-Cobb, Virginia State University

The strongest aspects of the book are the wealth of topics presented and the organization of the information presented; graphics and videos included for the instructor are definitely helpful and appealing to students.
- Sarah Sanborn, Clemson University


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