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Understanding Lifespan Human Development through Worldviews

How life-stages affect worldview

A key theme that I hope students are able to “take away” from this Lifespan Human Development class is that a person’s current life-stage has an impact on their worldview. For example, preschoolers (who are 2-6 years old) view the world through an egocentric lens and typically only seek to have their own goals met, without much consideration of the needs of others. On the other hand, the older-adult population (65+ years) is typically quite reflective and often thinks about how to live a life of integrity, considering ways to leave behind a positive legacy when they pass. 

For the content of the final project, students should choose one of the life-stages we have studied in CFS 210 (infancy, pre-school/early childhood, school-age, adolescence, emerging adulthood, middle adulthood, late-adulthood) and should seek to explain how a person in that particular life-stage is likely to view the world. Elements of physical, cognitive, and socio-emotional development should be included. Although citation of sources is expected, the final product should not “read” like a textbook…we have all already read the textbook! Conducting observations/interviews with individual(s) in the chosen life-stage will allow the student to have a deeper knowledge of the life-stage and to present specific examples within the final project. (the un-paper), of course there is much more flexibility of form. The objective for choosing the un-paper is to allow students to use their own unique strengths, interests, and talents to demonstrate their understanding of course materials. Students who choose the un-paper may consider formats such as: a PowerPoint presentation, Students who chose the un-paper should include a 1-page statement explaining the project (kind-of like a little placard at the base of a painting in a museum): why you chose the format that you did, the significance of your choices, and what sources were used.

To expand on the above statement, I want you first to pick a stage from the text. Then, look at how this person at this stage would view anything of your choosing in the world. You could look at how a child views COVID, which would be very different for an older adult. I am giving you the freedom to be creative and think of a topic you could discuss and approach it from all aspects, including cognitive, physical, emotional, and social.One approach you could take is to interview a person at a particular stage and ask them how they view a topic. A worldview is defined as a collection of attitudes, values, stories, and expectations about the world around us, which inform our every thought and action. This could be anything from religion, politics, Covid, gun violence, policies in government, poverty, death, and so on. I want you to pick something you are interested in and explore how the individual views the world as a child, young adult, middle adult, or older adult. You are NOT limited to the suggestions mentioned above. Use the rubric provided to ensure you follow the directions. I intentionally have made this assignment flexible so you can have the freedom to take and approach it from whatever angle you want. There is no right or wrong way as long as you follow the rubric on the instruction page in Canvas.

I hope this helps clarify the instructions, and you are welcome to email me with your stage and worldview idea. I am looking forward to reading the papers or unpapers. Have fun with it and, in the process, delve a little deeper into the concepts attached to a particular stage in development.

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