Individual Differences in Childhood and Adolescence

Individual Differences in Childhood and Adolescence




ECTS credit:3

Lecturer(s): prof. dr. Zupančič Maja


Contemporary models of the development of individual differences (ID) in children and adolescents from the perspective of temperament/personality traits. Current taxonomy of ID – in temperament/personality (broad- and narrow-order traits).
Trait- and person-centered approaches in exploring ID. Several types of developmental change or continuity in traits over childhood/adolescence: mean- or normative-level (in average trait expression across time/between different age-groups), relative (in individuals’ rank-ordering within their age-group over time), individual-level (reliable trait change within a person over time), structural (in the structure of traits over time), ipsative (in individual trait-profile over time), type-level change (in the structure of the trait-profile over time), individual type-membership change, and consistency/differences in trait expression across contexts.
Factors contributing to the development of ID: heritable genetic, intraindividual, life adaptations, environmental (family, peers, school-related, broader contextual); direct effects, mediated effects, and the effects of interaction.
Mechanisms of continuity and change in ID over time: learning processes, three types of person-environment transaction, social comparisons, identity (in adolescence).
Models of specific association between temperament/personality traits and important developmental adjustments/outcomes (e.g., vulnerability, scar, spectrum), such as social competence, internalizing and externalizing problems, interpersonal relationships, academic motivation, achievement, digital behavior.
Assessment of ID in childhood and adolescence: age-specific approaches, methods, techniques and measures. Usefulness of these measures in research and different professional settings.