5 Great Reasons to Study Human Development

Why Developmental Psychology Is Important

Developmental psychology courses are often required for many college majors including psychology, education, and nursing. Are you thinking about taking a class in development? Why are such classes so important? Whether you want to take just one course or devote your entire education to studying the topic, there are plenty of great reasons to learn more about human development.

If you are majoring in psychology, education or a medical field, some background knowledge of how people grow and change throughout life is essential. In addition to gaining a better understanding of others, studying human development can also provide greater personal insight.

Studying development helps you better understand yourself.

Thinking about human development
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We were all kids once, so learning more about how children develop and grow can provide additional insight into the person you have become. Studying development can also help you learn more about your future. By understanding the aging process, you'll be better prepared when you face issues associated with growing older.

It also helps you learn more about your children.

Father observing child development
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Whether you are a parent now or planning to become one in the future, studying human development can teach you a great deal about your children. In addition to learning things that can help make you a better parent, you can gain greater insight into how your children behave, think, learn and feel. Development is a complex process, so learning more about how kids grow physically, socially, emotionally and cognitively can lead to a deeper understanding of kids of all ages.

You'll better understand how to interact with kids.

Interacting with kids
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If you plan on having children or working with them at some point, studying human development can greatly improve your ability to interact with kids. Once you better understand the stages of development and what makes kids tick, you will feel more comfortable talking, playing and working with them.

And you'll gain a greater appreciation of development throughout life.

Young woman with grandmother
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When we think of human development, it's easy to think of it as a process that is largely complete once we hit early adulthood. It is important to realize, however, that development is an ongoing process that continues all throughout life.

As you enter adulthood, navigate middle age and face the onset of old age, having a greater understanding of how people continue to grow and change as they get older can help you appreciate and manage all the stages of your life.

It allows us to understand what's normal, and what's not.

Children in class
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Another important reason to study development is that you can gain a greater understanding of what is normal. While every person is a little bit different, human development tends to follow a remarkably predictable pattern. Once you have studied development, you'll know what's typical at certain ages and stages.

Perhaps most importantly, studying human development makes it easier to spot possible signs of trouble. From problems with physical or cognitive development in early childhood to emotional struggles later in life, being able to identify potential problems is important. The earlier developmental problems are detected, the sooner intervention can begin. No matter what the situation, early detection and treatment can lead to better outcomes.

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