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BPCC-109: Developmental Psychology

BPCC-109: Developmental Psychology

IGNOU Solved Assignment Solution for 2022-23

If you are looking for BPCC-109 IGNOU Solved Assignment solution for the subject Developmental Psychology, you have come to the right place. BPCC-109 solution on this page applies to 2022-23 session students studying in BAPCH courses of IGNOU.

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Assignment Solution

Assignment Code: BPCC-109/ASST/TMA/2022-23

Course Code: BPCC-109


Year: 2022-2023

Verification Status: Verified by Professor


Total Marks: 100


NOTE: All questions are compulsory.



Assignment One


2 x 20 = 40


Answer the following questions in about 500 words each. Each question carries 20 marks.


1. Explain sensory and perceptual development in infants and children.

Ans) Information from the senses helps babies and young children "know" many things about their surroundings, like how soft a cloth is or what colour blocks they play with. Sensation is what happens when information interacts with the eyes, ears, nose, tongue, and skin, which are all sensory receptors.


The Ecological View

Gibson (1989, 2001) said that we shouldn't put together how we see the world from bits and pieces of information we get from our senses. Instead, it was suggested that our perceptual system picks and chooses from the many pieces of information that come from the environment. So, we can say that our senses are what bring us into contact with the world and allow us to interact with it and adapt to it. Gibson thinks that objects give us the chance to interact with them and that they fit within our abilities to do different things. We call it "affordance."



Babies respond to touch as soon as they are born. As we've already talked about, touching the cheeks makes the head turn, and touching the lips makes most people make sucking movements. Touch has also been shown to help with physical growth and is also important for emotional growth. Schore (2001) also came to the conclusion that "the emotional communications of evolving attachment transactions have a direct effect on the experience-dependent development of the developing brain of the infant."


Taste and Smell

Research has shown that most people are sensitive to taste even before they are born (Doty & Shah, 2007). In a study, saccharin was added to the amniotic fluid of a foetus that was almost full-term. This made the foetus swallow more. In another study, it was shown that 2-hour-old babies' faces changed when they tasted sweet, bitter, and sour solutions. This shows that babies can tell the difference between different tastes.



People use their eyes more than any other sense to learn about their surroundings, and this is true even for babies. But vision is the sense that is least developed at birth because the parts of the eye and brain that are responsible for seeing are not yet fully formed. Because of this, babies can't see small things far away. A newborn's vision is thought to be 20/600, which means that an object 20 feet away looks as clear to the baby as if it were 600 feet away to an adult with normal vision (Slater et al., 2010). By 6 months, the person's vision has improved to 20/25 or 20/30.


Depth Perception

Depth perception is the ability to see the world in three dimensions, so that you can tell how far away things are from you and from other things. It's an important part of exploring the world, figuring out what's going on there, and planning what to do next.


Pattern Perception

As babies get older, they like more complicated patterns over simple ones or plain stimuli. A study showed that 3-week-old babies looked at black-and-white checkerboards with big squares longer than ones with just one square, while 8- to 14-month-old babies liked the ones with many more squares.


Face Perception

It is well known that babies are very interested in people's faces soon after they are born. People tend to look for structure in patterns, and this applies to how they see faces. Turati and his colleagues found in 2006 that people can't tell the difference between real and fake faces based on inner or finer features, but they like looking at pictures of faces with their eyes open and a direct gaze.


2. Discuss the factors affecting the development of prosocial behaviour.


Biological Factors

Psycho-physiologists have found a lot of evidence that empathy has a biological basis and that people are more likely to be kind because of their genes (Hastings, Zahn-Waxler, &. Many cross-sectional and longitudinal twin studies have shown that heritability is a factor in the differences between children in these kinds of skills, and that its effect gets stronger as a person gets older.


Psychological Processes

Prosocial behaviour is also affected by a wide range of psychological processes that change as children get older.


Socio-Cognitive Changes

One kind of change that comes with getting older is how our social and cognitive skills change over time. Between 18 and 30 months, a child's ability to use language and pay attention to more than one thing at a time grows. This makes them better able to work with others. When toddlers learn to talk, they become more responsive and better able to explain why they do or don't act in a kind way. In the same way, as children get older, they are better able to see things from other people's points of view and understand what they are thinking and feeling.



Motivation is also a key factor. Younger children may want to help others because they want to get rewards for "good" behaviour or avoid getting in trouble. This changes over time as the need for generalised reciprocity and social approval takes over, changing the reasons why people help each other.


Dispositional Variables

Temperament is a key trait that contributes to the development of helpful behaviour. A child's temperament shows up when they are young and is the basis for stable differences in how they react and how they control themselves (Berk, 2014). Children who are easy to get along with are happy, adapt well, and can control themselves in some ways. They are more likely to comfort others and act in a good way toward others.


Socialization and Environmental Influences

As was said above, many biological and psychological factors can make a child more likely to act in a certain way. However, it is impossible to deny that environmental factors also play a role in a child's willingness to help others. Parents and other socializers can teach children how to be good citizens in many ways, such as by supporting certain values and acting in the right way themselves.


Role of Parenting Practices

In this way, it's clear that parents play the biggest role, since they're the ones who have the most direct effect on a child's development. Even though most research has focused on the mother-child relationship as the most important, there has recently been a shift toward looking at how both parents affect how prosocial their children are. Studies in this area have shown that a good and healthy relationship between a parent and a child may be linked to prosocial behaviour in childhood and adolescence.


Other Family Members

Aside from parents, other family members also have a big impact on how children act toward others. Most research in this area has been about the role of siblings. Since siblings spend a lot of time together, they have a lot of chances to learn about different kinds of social interactions and skills, such as how to be kind to others. For siblings to get along, they have to share toys and other resources, work together to do chores around the house, comfort each other, etc.


Influences Outside the Family

As a child grows up, they meet more people who help them learn how to get along with others. Even though there hasn't been a lot of research in this area, scholars have shed some light on how peers, teachers, and institutions affect children's good behaviour. Peers are people who know each other well and have the same status.


Assignment Two


6 x 5 = 30


Answer the following questions in about 100 words each. Each question carries 5 marks.


3. Culture and human development

Ans) People are becoming more aware of how culture affects children's mental growth (also called human ontogenesis). But there are several different ways to look into this subject. Cross-cultural psychology looks at how culture causes differences in how kids grow up, which are called "dependent variables." Researchers who study the role of cultural learning in human evolution see culture as the transfer of beliefs and values from one person to another. "Cultural psychology," on the other hand, sees culture not as a cause but as a part of how people's minds work. It calls our attention to the fact that people live in societies full of material artefacts, tools, and signs that help people do things.


4. Cyberbullying

Ans) Cyberbullying is a type of bullying that has only been around for a short time. It means using electronics and communication to hurt other people. It can be done through e-mails, text messages, digital images, social media, websites, blogs, chatrooms, etc., to scare, threaten, or hurt other people. A cyberbully might post threats, personal information about the victim, negative labels, hate speech, or sexual comments about someone. Cyberbullying can happen anywhere and at any time. For example, you can avoid face-to-face bullying by getting away from the bully, not going to school, etc. Because of this, victims may feel bad emotions like fear, frustration, anger, anxiety, or even depression. Some may also think about ending their lives. Sexting could be a form that hurts a lot.


5. Treatment of Autism

Ans) Autism is hard to treat, and because the problems are so bad, people with autism don't even get the right care. Due to the fact that children with autism don't usually respond well to treatment, they are often given a lot of "new" methods that don't work most of the time. Most of the time, antidepressants, antipsychotics, and stimulants are used to treat autism. However, the data on how well they work does not support their use unless the child can't be controlled by any other means or drugs. Sometimes, the drugs are only used to treat a specific symptom.

6. Metacognition

Ans) Metacognition is the process of thinking about and controlling one's own thoughts and cognitive activities. It is also called "knowing about knowing" or "knowing about knowing." It can include knowing when and where to use certain learning or problem-solving strategies, knowing about memory (metamemory), and knowing about one's own memory. The process of getting smarter doesn't stop when a child is in middle school or later. In a study, kids in the third and fifth grades were given new things to learn. They told the truth about which ones they could remember and which ones they couldn't. When they could choose what to study from what they were given, 5th graders chose things they hadn't been able to learn well before, while 3rd graders chose at random.


7. Application of Vygotsky’s theory on Cognitive Development

Ans) Vygotsky's theory can be used in many different ways in the real world. In line with the ZPD, parents can tutor their children themselves or hire a tutor to help them do better in any subject. Teachers could also have students help each other in the classroom. Over time, people who aren't as skilled start to do better on their own in the classroom or at home. Vygotsky's theory also stresses how important it is for a child's development to value his or her culture. These values are passed down from one generation to the next through conversations and interactions, mostly in the native language. Vygotsky's work has also changed the way education systems use his ideas to make learning more interesting and relevant. and helps people keep the most important parts of their culture alive.


8. Phases in prenatal development

Ans) The first two weeks after conception are known as the "germinal period." It includes making the zygote, letting the cells divide, and attaching the zygote to the wall of the uterus. During this phase, the zygote grows quickly and forms a blastocyst. The blastocyst has a mass of cells inside that will eventually become an embryo. Between two and eight weeks after conception is when the embryonic period takes place. At this point, the blastocyst is called an embryo, and cells and major organs are growing quickly. The Fetal Period - starts around 8–9 weeks and lasts until birth. The baby continues to grow quickly and is now called a foetus. Its major organs are beginning to form and work.






2 x 15 = 30


Note: You need to complete the activities according to the given instructions. Please attempt the activities in a coherent and organized manner. The word limit for each activity is around 700 words. Each activity is of 15 marks. For the activities, you need to refer to the self-learning material, and any other relevant offline or online resources. Some useful resources are also listed at the end of each unit.


1. Watch the video here.


Harlow's Studies on Dependency in Monkeys - YouTube


Answer the following after watching the video.


a) Summarize the major findings of the above experiment.

Ans) Harlow (1958) took baby rhesus monkeys away from their mothers so he could test them. He then made two surrogate "mothers" for the babies. One was made of metal and fed the babies through an artificial nipple. The other was made of soft, fluffy material but didn't feed the babies. The first surrogate brought food but didn't comfort the rhesus babies. The second surrogate didn't bring food, but the rhesus babies could cuddle with it.


In later experiments, Harlow (1958) showed that the fluffy surrogate gave rhesus infants a safe place to start when they were in a new place or around new things. In these tests, the babies and their fluffy stand-ins were put in a place they had never been before, like a new cage. These babies would look around and, if they were scared, go back to the surrogate to feel safe. When the babies were put in the new environment without a surrogate, they did not explore. Instead, they laid on the floor, rocked back and forth, and sucked their thumbs.


Harlow also looked at how rhesus monkeys grew up when they didn't have a fluffy surrogate or when they didn't have a surrogate at all. Extremely bad things happened to these babies. Rhesus babies who were raised by a metal surrogate that gave them milk had softer poop than Rhesus babies who were raised by a fluffy surrogate that gave them milk. Harlow thought that the babies with the metal surrogates had psychological problems that showed up as stomach problems.


When put in a place they didn't know, Rhesus babies who hadn't been raised with surrogates acted the same way as babies who had been raised with surrogates. However, their fearful behaviour didn't change even when a surrogate was there with them. They were also less curious and less interested in exploring than babies who had surrogates from a younger age.


When these babies were about a year old, they met a woman who carried them. As a result, they acted scared and violent. They would rock their cages all the time, scream, and try to get out. After a few days, though, these behaviours stopped. The babies went up to the surrogate, looked at it, and clung to it, but never as much as babies who were raised with a fluffy surrogate from a younger age.


b) Are there any ethical concerns in the experiment?

Ans) Harlow's monkey experiment was unethical because he treated the monkeys in a way that caused them a lot of stress and stunted their growth. That is the only conclusion that makes sense. Even though the study gave humans information and knowledge that probably stopped a lot of the same pain and bad development in people, that doesn't change the ethics of the experiment. The two outcomes are fixed and do not change because of the other.


This machine was called the "pit of despair" by Harlow. In a paper from 1969, he explains that the idea was to show how a person with severe depression feels: "Depressed people say they are in the depths of despair or sunk in a well of loneliness and hopelessness. So, we made an instrument that met all of these requirements and called it the "pit," or the "vertical chamber" if the word "pit" makes you uncomfortable.


Within a few days of being put in the pit, most monkeys would stop moving and huddle together. Once they were taken out of the machine, the monkeys couldn't go back to being social again. Harlow says in a 1971 study that monkeys who were put in the "pit of despair" for 30 days didn't play, didn't want to talk to other monkeys, and didn't show any signs of being curious. Most of the monkeys would just stay still in a huddle, clasping their hands around their own bodies. Harlow said that these "profound behavioural anomalies" would still be there even after the person was taken out of the device for a few months.


c) Discuss the implications of the results from Harlow’s experiment.

Ans) The results of Harlow's experiments show that the primary caregiver's job is not just to meet the primary needs of the baby. Primary drives are those that make it possible for an animal to stay alive, like the need for food or water. Harlow says that there is another need, which he calls "contact comfort," that the fluffy surrogate met.


The "contact comfort" drive does more than just meet the need for love and comfort. From Harlow's experiments, it seems that these fluffy "stand-ins" gave babies a safe, comforting place to start from, which gave them the confidence to explore new places and things and deal with scary sounds.


Harlow's work only led to conclusions about the role of maternal surrogates, since the surrogates also gave milk, which is something that only female mammals can do. So, it was thought that human babies have a strong need to bond with a mother or other caretaker (Bowlby, 1951).


2. Review an article on adolescent health in India (article from a Journal/ Book).

Note: Please note the following in the article, like purpose, research questions, hypotheses, methods, evidence, key findings, major conclusions, and publication information. Attach the printout of the article along with the write-up.

Ans) Adolescence is the time between childhood and adulthood. It is a time of many important social, cultural, economic, and biological changes that set the stage for adulthood. Teenagers (10–19 years old) make up almost 22% of the population of India. Nutritional disorders (like malnutrition and obesity), drug abuse, high-risk sexual behaviours, stress, common mental disorders, and injuries are all big problems for teens' health (including road traffic injuries, suicides and different types of violence). Many of these are precursors to communicable and non-communicable diseases (including mental disorders) and injuries, which cause a lot of illness, death, disability, and costs for teens, their families, and health systems.


Iron-deficiency anaemia is the cause of the most disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) among teenagers around the world. This is followed by skin diseases, road accidents, and mood disorders. More and more teens are getting fat, using drugs, and having sexual relationships that are dangerous. The number of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and reproductive tract infections (RTIs), unintended pregnancies, and unsafe abortions is high and not reported enough. In this situation, there weren't many programmes for teens, and there wasn't much information about their health. 2 and teenagers didn't get the best care for their general health, reproductive health, or sexual health.


There isn't enough rigorous research on interventions to improve adolescent health to help guide programmes that try to improve their health. There are a lot of holes in India's research on the health of teenagers. 2 Teenagers aged 10–14 are not studied enough. There isn't much information about how much 10–14-year-old teens know about sexual and reproductive health. Also, most nutrition studies focus on children ages 0–6 and older teens ages 15–19. Because of this, there isn't much evidence about the nutritional needs of kids ages 10–14. Also, most research on nutrition and sexual and reproductive health has been done on girls, while boys' similar needs have been ignored. Research and programmes should pay more attention to young boys and men.


This is important not only to make sure that men and women have the same roles, attitudes, behaviours, and outcomes, but also because men and women's sexual and reproductive health are linked. Also, there isn't much written about sexual abuse in teens, even though more and more cases are being reported. Also, there isn't much research on how to stop people from using drugs in India.


Another gap in the research is interventional research on the effects of behaviour change communication programmes at the community level to raise awareness among parents, teens, and other community members about existing laws that are meant to protect young people, the availability of services for teens, the importance of nutrition, and the importance of delaying marriage and childbirth, including family planning. 2 Mahanta et al.6 have done a study that tries to fill in some of this gap.


There is evidence that not all teens know about or use adolescent reproductive and sexual health services, and that more urban and school-going teens do. Even though the authors didn't talk about it, one thing that stood out from this study was that even though community health workers (ANMs, ASHAs, and AWWs) were in charge of behaviour change interventions, teenage girls didn't see them as good places to go for help with menstrual problems or STI symptoms. Instead, they said they would rather talk to their mothers about these things. Teenage girls, on the other hand, said they could get Oral Contraceptive Pills/Condoms from ASHAs (but not from sub-centers/PHCs), and the use of sanitary napkins provided by the government went up after the intervention. These results could mean that teenage girls thought CHWs were good for getting health products, but not for getting advice on reproductive and sexual health issues.


Most visits to CHWs (mostly by young women) were about care for pregnancy, care for newborns, and their own common illnesses. This could mean, and other studies have come to the same conclusion, that when it came to the sexual and reproductive health of teens, CHWs mostly only reached married teens, especially girls. So, we need to find ways to improve the reach of CHWs to all adolescents (married, single, in school, or not in school) for Adolescent Reproductive and Sexual Health. At the same time, we need to strengthen the Adolescent Friendly Health Clinics (AFHCs) that are being set up under the Rashtriya Kishor Swasthya Karyakram (RKSK). These clinics aim to provide a variety of goods, such as weekly iron and folic


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