Science Prerequisites for Health Professionals

PSYO 1020: Developmental Psychology

Credits - 3


This course will explore basic concepts and theories of human development with a focus on the nine major periods of life from prenatal development to death and dying. The nature of interactions between an individual’s biology and their environment will be examined by integrating information from a wide array of research studies. These studies consist of, but are not limited to, ground-breaking historic studies to recent studies of physical, neurological, and cognitive development.



Lally, M. & Valentine-French, S.  (2019).  Lifespan development:  A psychological perspective (2nd edition).  Creative Commons.


Mandatory UNE-compliant webcam – To be used during proctored exams

Learning Objectives and Outcomes

Program Outcomes

In lecture courses, students should be able to:

  • Communicate scientific concepts and information clearly.
  • Illustrate fundamental laws, theories, and principles of scientific disciplines.
  • Apply knowledge and critical thinking skills to scientific problems.

Course Objectives

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  1. Describe the scientific methodology and research designs typically employed in research in human development
  2. Identify the nature of interaction between biology and environment and its influence on development throughout the lifespan
  3. Discuss human genetics and issues related to prenatal development, birth, and infancy
  4. Discuss the major developmental milestones in physical, cognitive, and socioemotional domains throughout the human lifespan
  5. Analyze significant theories of cognitive development, including those of Piaget, Vygotsky, and the information-processing approach
  6. Examine key issues of development in adulthood, including marriage and divorce, parenting, midlife, and careers choices
  7. Analyze the key issues of development in late adulthood, including retirement, living arrangements, cognitive changes, death and grieving
  8. Judge the alignment of expected milestones of development with observed/reported milestones reached by an individual in childhood or adolescence
  9. Judge the alignment of expected milestones of development with observed/reported milestones reached by an individual in early, middle, or late adulthood 


On the course start date, students will have access to orientation. This must be completed to be able to gain access to the first module in the course. Students must complete the first module to gain access to the next one. We recommend that students spend about 15 hours per week to complete a course in 16 weeks. When trying to complete the course in less than 16 weeks, we typically see students do this successfully within 12-14 weeks. Instructors will be timely in grading and feedback, but it will not be instant.


Practice Proctored Exam

There is a highly recommended Practice Proctored Exam available to all students. The first attempt is free. This exam does not cover course material and is not included in your overall course grade. It prepares test takers for what the testing environment will be like, what forms of identification are needed, and provides a chance to test your external webcam with a live proctor. This is a great way to become familiar with and prepare for your exam!

Self-Assessments/Matching Activities

Students will be provided a matching bank and will be asked to match key terms with their definitions or related concepts.  Self-Assessments are not counted towards the student’s final grade.


Discussions will provide the student with a choice of topics from which they can choose to provide a discussion response.  Students will post their initial replies to the discussion board prompts and will also respond to the posts of a minimum of 2 peers.

Reflection Papers

These written assignments ask students to reflect on different phenomena that occur across the life span in a manner that is informed by their own reading and research.

Problem-Based Learning Scenarios

These written assignments provide the student with a real-world example of a developmental issue and ask them to apply research from life span psychology to suggest a strategy for producing the best outcome.

Creative Assignment

Students will submit a virtual poster that clearly represents how they want to retire.  This presentation will include highly specific information regarding the lifestyle they would like to have in retirement.  This will include specific examples of the living situation the student would like to have, their anticipated financial situation, and ideal health for the perfect retirement.

Life Span Interview

For this project, students will identify two people or a caregiver (as in the case of an infant), who represent two different stages of the life span—ideally, two who do not identify with the student’s own current stage of life span development—and set up a brief 15–20 minute interview to explore their perspective of their stage of the lifespan.  These interviews will be video recorded and submitted for credit. 

Final Cumulative Exam (Proctored) 

This is a 50-item, multiple-choice exam that is proctored.  Students will have 90 minutes to complete the exam.  This exam will allow 1 page of notes, front, and back. See UNE’s ProctorU page for information about signing up and scheduling your exam. 

Proctored exams are closed for review. You will not be able to review them at any time. Please contact your instructor for specific feedback.

Grading Policy

Your grade in this course will be determined by the following criteria:

Grade Breakdown

Assignment CategoryGrade
Self-Assessments/Matching Activities (3 X 0%)0%
Discussion Boards (2 X 5%)10%
Reflection Papers (5 X 5%)25%
Problem-Based Learning Scenarios (7 X 4%)28%
Creative Assignment ( 1 X 10%)10%
Life Span Interview15%
Final Cumulative Exam12%

Grade Scale

Grade Points Grade Point Average (GPA)
A 94 – 100% 4.00
A- 90 – 93% 3.75
B+ 87 – 89% 3.50
B 84 – 86% 3.00
B- 80 – 83% 2.75
C+ 77 – 79% 2.50
C 74 – 76% 2.00
C- 70 – 73% 1.75
D 64 – 69% 1.00
F 00 – 63% 0.00








Introduction to LifeSpan Psychology


Textbook – Chapter 1

Discussion 1

Self-assessment – Perspectives in Lifespan Development


Heredity, Prenatal Development, and Birth

Textbook – Chapter 2

Reflection Paper – Exposure to teratogens, Self-Assessments – Teratogens & Birth Defects & Chromosomal Disorders 


Infancy and Toddlerhood – Physical and Cognitive Development

Textbook – Chapter 3 pages 71 – 96

Key Study: Animal Research on Neuroplasticity

Problem-based Learning Scenario – Design a daycare


Infancy and Toddlerhood – Socioemotional Development

Textbook – Chapter 3 pages 97 – 114

Problem-based Learning Scenario – Cry It Out


Early Childhood – Physical and Cognitive Development

Textbook – Chapter 4 pages 115 – 138

Reflection Paper – Would you have been a good eye-witness as a child?


Early Childhood – Socioemotional Development

Textbook – Chapter 4 pages 139 – 163

Problem-based Learning Scenario – Discipline and Parenting


Middle and Late Childhood – Physical and Cognitive Development

Textbook – Chapter 5 pages 164 – 192

Reflection Paper – Disabilities in the Classroom


Middle and Late Childhood – Socioemotional Development

Textbook – Chapter 5 pages 193 – 214

No assignment this week!


Adolescence – Physical and Cognitive Development

Textbook – Chapter 6 pages 215 – 232

Discussion 2; Problem-Based Learning Scenario – Teen Driving


Adolescence – Socioemotional Development

Textbook – Chapter 6 pages 233 – 245

Reflection Paper – Adolescent Identity


Emerging and Early Adulthood – Physical and Cognitive Development

Textbook – Chapter 7 pages 246 – 273

Problem-based Learning Scenario – Career Development and Employment in Early Adulthood


Early Adulthood – Socioemotional Development

Textbook – Chapter 7 pages 274 – 306

Problem-based Learning Scenario – Modern Parenting


Middle Adulthood – Physical and Cognitive Development

Textbook – Chapter 8 pages 307 – 337

Reflection Paper – Preventing Decline


Middle Adulthood – Socioemotional Development

Textbook – Chapter 8 pages 338 – 371

Problem-based Learning Scenario – Type A Personalities and Stress


Late Adulthood

Textbook – Chapter 9

Creative Project – Plan Your Own Retirement


Death and Dying

Textbook – Chapter 10

Life Span Interview;

Cumulative Final Exam – See UNE’s ProctorU page for information about signing up and scheduling your exam. 

Student Resources

Online Student Support

Your Student Support Specialist is a resource for you. Please don’t hesitate to contact them for assistance, including, but not limited to course planning, current problems or issues in a course, technology concerns, or personal emergencies.

Questions? Visit the Student Support Science Prerequisites page

Instructor and Support Contact Information

Check Brightspace for specific instructor and support specialist contact information.

Further Assistance

Your student service advisor monitors course progression and provides assistance or guidance when needed. They can assist questions regarding ordering course materials, University policies, billing, navigating the course in Brightspace, and more.

Student Lounge

The Student Lounge Discussion Board is a designated support forum in which students may engage with each other and grapple with course content. Feel free to post questions, seek clarification, and support each other, but be mindful of UNE’s Academic Integrity Policy.

Your instructor will monitor this forum. However, if you are seeking specific and timely answers to questions about course content or your personal grades, please contact your instructor via course messages. For questions about course materials, program policy, and how to navigate and proceed through the course, please contact your Student Service Advisor through the Student Portal.


Proctored Examinations

The University of New England has contracted with ProctorU to provide students with the most convenient online exam proctoring system. This system provides a simple, no cost to the student, secure, online proctor for exams and allows the student to take all the exams at home and on their own schedule.

Upon enrollment into the course, each student will register with ProctorU and establish a login name and password. This will give the student access to all of ProctorU’s services. When ready, students will schedule each of their proctored exams with ProctorU. Exams must be scheduled at least 72 hours in advance to avoid fees. Prior to taking their exams, students must be sure that they have downloaded the ProctorU Chrome or Firefox extension and are using the most current version of Chrome or Firefox. They must also be sure their testing site’s connection meets the minimum requirements by using ProctorU’s “Test It Out” utility.

Upon the exam day and hour, students will log in to ProctorU and click on “exams”. After following the procedures outlined at ProctorU’s web site, the student will log in to Brightspace and locate their correct exam. The proctor will then allow student access to that exam.

Students must use ProctorU and must follow all proctoring requirements for their exams to be credited.

Proctored exams are not available for review at any time. You will not be able to see the questions, nor the answers you’ve given, after completing the exams. Please contact your instructor for specific feedback.

Course Discussions

Discussion board assignments cover interesting current events or materials related to this course that contribute to a deeper understanding of key concepts and allow you to interact with your classmates and the instructor. Each assignment may require you to conduct internet research, read additional materials (a short journal or magazine article), visit a specific webpage, AND/OR view a short video prior to writing a response following the specific guidelines in the assignment.

To earn full credit: you will need to post a response to the discussion topic, respond to the original posts of at least two other students, and then contribute meaningfully to an ongoing discussion. You will need to post your initial response before you will see any posts from your classmates. Please keep in mind that only this initial response is included in your assignment grade, so make sure you have followed all of the guidelines and written a complete response prior to submitting the post. For special cases where one or two students are accelerating faster through the course, the instructor will participate in the discussion so that everyone has the opportunity to interact.

Please see Brightspace for a full description, along with specific guidelines, for each assignment. Discussion board assignments should be completed, along with all other assignments in the course, in the order that they appear. Due to the course design, you may be unable to take a proctored exam if you do not complete all assignments that appear prior to that exam.

Please also refer to the Grading Policy/Grade Breakdown section of the syllabus to learn the percentage of your grade that each discussion board assignment is worth.

Technology Requirements

Please review the technical requirements for UNE Online Programs: Technical Requirements

Course Length

A schedule of lectures and assignments is included in this syllabus. This is, however, a self-paced course and you can complete the course in less time.

  1. Courses in the SPHP program are equivalent to one-semester courses designed to be completed in 16 weeks
  2. Enrollment in the course begins the day your section opens which is listed in the Academic Calendar found on the Student Success Portal.
  3. Course start and end dates are in respect to Eastern Time.

Withdrawal and Refund Policies

Please visit the enrollment page to review the withdrawal and refund policies.

Grade Policy

Students are expected to attempt and complete all graded assignments and proctored exams by the end date of the course. View the incomplete grade policy.


Due to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, only the student may request official transcripts. This may be done online by going to the University of New England Registrar website and following the directions on the page.

To view your unofficial UNE student transcript:

  1. Log into uonline at
  2. Select Student Services
  3. Select Student Records
  4. Select Academic Transcript

To request your official UNE student transcript:

Please review your Unofficial Transcript prior to requesting an Official Transcript.

  1. Log into uonline at
  2. Select Student Services
  3. Select Student Records
  4. Select Request Printed/Official Transcript
  5. Follow the prompts

After you click Submit Request, your official transcript will be put into the queue to be printed in the Registrar’s Office.

Academic Integrity

The University of New England values academic integrity in all aspects of the educational experience. Academic dishonesty in any form undermines this standard and devalues the original contributions of others. It is the responsibility of all members of the University community to actively uphold the integrity of the academy; failure to act, for any reason, is not acceptable.

Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to the following:

  1. Cheating, copying, or the offering or receiving of unauthorized assistance or information.
  2. Fabrication or falsification of data, results, or sources for papers or reports.
  3. Action which destroys or alters the work of another student.
  4. Multiple submissions of the same paper or report for assignments in more than one course without permission of each instructor.
  5. Plagiarism, the appropriation of records, research, materials, ideas, or the language of other persons or writers and the submission of them as one’s own.

Charges of academic dishonesty will be reviewed by the Program Director. Penalties for students found responsible for violations may depend upon the seriousness and circumstances of the violation, the degree of premeditation involved, and/or the student’s previous record of violations. Appeal of a decision may be made to the Dean whose decision will be final. Student appeals will take place through the grievance process outlined in the student handbook.