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					University of Waterloo

Winter 2012

Course Name: Lifespan Processes: The Normal Events

Instructor: Debbie Wang
Office: Part-Time Faculty

Class Times/Location: 6:00–8:50W/REN 2106

Office Hours: Before or after class on Wednesdays

Course Description:
 This course (ISS150R) provides students with an understanding of the lifespan development
 and learning of individuals from a bio-psycho-social perspective. The term “development” is
 applied to changes over time, thus “lifespan development” describes changes in human
 development that occur over the duration of a lifetime. The course encourages individuals to
 develop an understanding of human experiences and behaviour within a human development
 framework. In doing so students will be encouraged to further develop understanding of their
 own development and the conditions and contexts that have shaped them now and may
 influence their development in the future. They will also be encouraged to consider the
 impacts of developmental influences on others’ life experiences and pathways.

Course Objectives:

     To identify and summarize lifespan processes through the life cycle, from conception to
       death, from a bio-psycho-social perspective.
     To describe problems and challenges that can interfere with healthy development (i.e.
       poverty, mental and physical illness, etc.)
     To demonstrate the skills to locate professional articles and access media resources for in-
       depth understanding of specific developmental issues relating to life stages and
     To apply that understanding to issues in everyday life and in working with people across
       the lifespan.
     To develop and expand one’s ability to think critically about the content of the course

ISS 150R (002) – Winter 2012

 Boyd, D., Bee, H. & Johnson, P. (2012) Lifespan Development 4th Canadian Ed., Pearson.
 Any additional required readings will be assigned during class time and will be available on
 reserve at Renison Library.

Course Requirements

Midterm Exam (25%)

The midterm exam covers the content of chapters 1-10. Students will be required to answer
multiple choice / true & false questions as well as being given a choice of short answer/essay
questions to answer (which will be given in advance, one class prior to the exam).

Term Paper (30%)

Each student will be required to write an essay (complete with an introduction & overview,
discussion, conclusion, and bibliography) introducing a topic, identifying concerns or problems,
and demonstrating the effects or adjustments of the person for his/her life course. Students may
choose specific topics from the general areas of parent-child relationship, school experiences,
mating, career, mental health, death and dying, etc. Use different developmental theories studied
in this course to examine the effect of problems on normal development. Students must clear
their topics with the instructor.

Appropriate resources: Students are required to use academic books and journal articles (within
the last 10 years) with a minimum of 8 sources. Two of those sources may be from magazines,
newspapers or websites (as long as they are from recognized educational sites, not from a private
home page). The paper should have a title page, typed, double-spaced, and approx. 2000-2500
words (about 10 pages), using American Psychological Association (APA) or Modern Language
Association (MLA) format with proper citations and references. Organization and clarity of
thought as well as proper grammar and spelling are expected. Simply staple the pages together –
no folders please.

Final Exam (35%)

The final exam covers the content of chapters 11-19 and life stress management. Students will
be required to answer multiple choice questions as well as being given a choice of essay
questions to answer. The essay questions will be given in advance and students will write the
exam during the regularly scheduled exam period and be notified of the time and date later in the

ISS 150R (002) – Winter 2012
Class Participation & Reflection of Learning (10%)

Students are expected to prepare for class by reading the required materials and reflecting on this
material in relation to their own experiences. In class, students are expected to contribute to
group learning by being present and engaged in the discussion and by sharing their ideas,
reflections, questions, and experiences in a manner that is respectful of others.


Midterm Test                          Date: February 8       Value: 25%
Term Paper                            Date: March 21*        Value: 30%
Final Examination                     Date: Exam Period      Value: 35%
Participation & Reflection            Ongoing                Value: 10%

* Assignments are to be handed in at the beginning of class on the due date. Late papers will be
deducted 5% on the first day and 2% for each subsequent day (including weekend days) for one
week, after which the paper will not be accepted. Requests for extensions (with valid reason)
must be negotiated prior to the due date, in order to avoid late penalties.

 The reading assignments are a critical element of this course. You should begin each week by
 reading from the assigned textbook, the online lecture, and any articles that may be assigned.

Week 1                Introduction to the course
January 4             Basic concepts and methods
                      Reading: Chapter 1 & Life Stress Management

Week 2                Theoretical views of development
January 11            Reading: Chapter 2 & 3

Week 3                Prenatal development and birth
January 18            Postpartum Mood Disorders
                      Reading: Chapter 4, 5, 6

ISS 150R (002) – Winter 2012
Week 4              Infancy and early childhood
January 25          Attachment & bonding, Nipissing Developmental Screen Tool (age 0-6)
                    Reading: Chapter 7, 8

Week 5              Middle childhood
February 1          The Big Five Personality Traits, Schooling, bullying, child abuse
                    Reading: Chapter 9, 10

Week 6              Midterm Exam
February 8          Research for term paper

Week 7              Adolescence: Developmental tasks and crises
February 15         Substance abuse, mental & sexual health, self-concept & peer influence
                    Reading: Chapter 11, 12

February 22         Reading Week – No Class

Week 8              Early adulthood
February 29         Vocational choice, cohabitation, marriage & parenting
                    Reading: Chapter 13, 14

Week 9              Middle adulthood
March 7             Family, career, roles, identity and other crises
                    Reading: Chapter 15, 16

Week 10             Late adulthood
March 14            Successful aging, retirement, living arrangements
                    Reading: Chapter 17, 18

ISS 150R (002) – Winter 2012
Week 11                 Death, dying, and bereavement
March 21                 Term paper due
                        Reading: Chapter 19

Week 12                 Life stress management
March 28                Course review and integration

Academic Integrity: In order to maintain a culture of academic integrity, members of the University of
Waterloo community are expected to promote honesty, trust, fairness, respect and responsibility.

Academic Integrity website (Arts):
Academic Integrity Office (UW):

Discipline: A student is expected to know what constitutes academic integrity [check ] to avoid committing academic offences and to take responsibility
for his/her actions. A student who is unsure whether an action constitutes an offence, or who needs help in
learning how to avoid offences (e.g., plagiarism, cheating) or about “rules” for group work/collaboration,
should seek guidance from the course instructor, academic advisor, or Renison’s Administrative Dean.
When misconduct has been found to have occurred, disciplinary penalties will be imposed under Policy
71, Student Discipline. For information on categories of offences and types of penalties, students should
refer to this policy . For typical penalties check
Guidelines for the Assessment of Penalties,

Grievance: A student who believes that a decision affecting some aspect of his/her university life has
been unfair or unreasonable may have grounds for initiating a grievance. Read Policy 70, Student
Petitions and Grievances, Section 4,

Appeals: A student may appeal the finding and/or penalty in a decision made under Policy 70 - Student
Petitions and Grievances (other than regarding a petition) or Policy 71 - Student Discipline if grounds for
an appeal can be established. Read Policy 72 - Student Appeals

Note for students with disabilities: The Office for Persons with Disabilities (OPD), located in Needles
Hall, Room 1132, collaborates with all academic departments to arrange appropriate accommodations for
students with disabilities without compromising the academic integrity of the curriculum. If you require
academic accommodations to lessen the impact of your disability, please register with the OPD at the
beginning of each academic term.

Final Examination Policy
For Winter 2012, the established examination period is April 9 -21, 2012. The schedule will be available
in February. Students should be aware that student travel plans are not acceptable grounds for granting an
alternative final examination time (see

ISS 150R (002) – Winter 2012

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