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PSYC 260 - Developmental Psychology: Debate Paper

Resources for Controversies and Development Stages

Where to start: Controversial Issues

Many of the most controversial issues in developmental psychology are the ones that bridge the gap between academic psychology and social issues or policy.  Three areas are particularly rife with topics:

1.  Education: The use of testing, focus on reading and math, and a decline in character-based or social education have all had impacts on children.  In many cases the prevailing wind in our culture goes against what psychologists say about how to raise children.  In other cases, psychologists are divided and their research is used to support more than one side of an issue.

Examples: Common Core education standards and developmental psychology
Home schooling and social development
Educational testing and its impact on children

2. Media: The exposure of children to violence, graphic content, and even television and video games themselves have been topics of a great deal of psychological research, much of which often gets media coverage as concerned parents try to do what is best for their children.

Examples: Violent video games' impact on children
Is there such a thing as too much television, from a brain-development perspective?

3. Nature and Nurture:  What impact does parenting have on personality, intelligence, and all forms of development?  Many of the aspects of this question have been played out across years and years of research.

Examples: Environmental versus genetic impacts on reading proficiency
Educational aptitude in adopted children
The effects of divorce on children's developmental growth

Psychology Databases

Films on Demand
Over 7,000 full-length, streaming educational videos in many academic disciplines.
Online Tutorial
Psychological Experiments Online 
            via Alexander StreetPsychological Experiments Online is a multimedia collection including videos and text that covers the 
 most important psychological experiments of the 20th and 21st centuries. The collection pairs 75 hours of audio and video recordings of the original experiments (when existent) with 40,000 pages of primary-source documents including notes, letters, and articles. Video Collection
The Complete Collection from includes a growing variety of over 200 titles in the fields of therapy and counseling. The videos are available streaming online and can be searched or browsed by therapeutic approach, therapeutic issue, and population.
PsycARTICLES via EBSCOhost (Full Text)
PsycARTICLES®, from the American Psychological Association (APA), is a definitive source of full text, peer-reviewed scholarly and scientific articles in psychology. It contains more than 153,000 articles from nearly 80 journals published by the American Psychological Association (APA), its imprint the Educational Publishing Foundation (EPF), and from allied organizations including the Canadian Psychological Association and the Hogrefe Publishing Group. It includes all journal articles, book reviews, letters to the editor, and errata from each journal. Coverage spans 1894 to the present and nearly all APA journals go back to Volume 1, Issue 1.
PsycINFO via EBSCOhost
The PsycINFO®, database, American Psychological Association’s (APA) renowned resource for abstracts of scholarly journal articles, book chapters, books, and dissertations, is the largest resource devoted to peer-reviewed literature in behavioral science and mental health. It contains over 3 million records and summaries dating as far back as the 1600s with one of the highest DOI matching rates in the publishing industry. Journal coverage, which spans from the 1800s to the present, includes international material selected from around 2,500 periodicals in dozens of languages.
SAGE Journals Online (Full Text)
SAGE provides access to over 600 journals in the social sciences, humanities, medicine, engineering, and physical and life sciences.
Scopus via Elsevier SciVerseScopus is the largest abstract and citation database of peer-reviewed literature, featuring tools to track, analyze and visualize research. For peer-reviewed research published since 1995, Scopus delivers the most comprehensive overview of the world's research output in the fields of science, technology, medicine, social sciences, arts, and humanities.
Women's Health
Resource on women’s health topics: pregnancy, body image, HIV/AIDS, girls health, heart health, menopause, mental health, quitting smoking, and domestic violence.


Selected Other Databases for Debate Topics