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Introduction to child psychology
Introduction to child psychology

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3 Asking questions about children’s development

All theories about development are guided by key questions. There are a number of questions that have persisted since the beginning of child psychological research. Child psychologists are interested in understanding how development occurs and what influences this development. For example, how do young children learn about emotions? Do they simply learn to show emotions from other people in their environment? Here we offer two important questions involved in trying to understand the lives of children and young people:

  • How does socio-cultural context influence development?
  • How do children shape their own development?
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Figure 5 A child can express a range of different basic human emotions as well as recognising the emotional states of other individuals