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The Bioecological Model of Human Development
Human development can be explained from many different points of views. Contextual perspective is a popular perspective to look at human development. It looks at human development as integrally connected to the social contexts. According to Papalia, Olds, Wendkos, Feldman, & Duskin, 2008, Urie Bronfenbrenner, an American psychologist, suggested that children’s development can only be understood when we understand the
community and school in this system.social ecology they are surrounded by. To explain his theory he developed a model called bioecological model of human development. it is the most influencing entity for the child’s development. This model is founded on four basic interrelations that work between the environment humans live in and the humans. A child s is always interacting with these and so he gets much affected from them. Berns (2010) comments that a child grows and progresses in a better way when there is positive and encouraging interactions with the child and the Microsystems. Though all these four systems are different. and macrosystem. As a child comes from a family and has the most interactions with the family. The four systems are termed as microsystem. peers. We may also consider the effects of media on a child’s life. We see the most direct interactions occurring in the microsystems. This paper aims at providing empirical evidence that ecological systems affects child development. mesosystem. they influence a child’s development. Berns (2010) explains that the effects occur through many interactions. More . That is why we see family members. exosystem. The Microsystems denote the interactions and connections a child has with the important people or entities around him.
Parenting style has much effect on different areas of socialization of a child. Authoritative parents are democratic in nature and the children of these parents become self-controlled. 197) states three roles schools pay. content. history and reading. Uninvolved parents are indifferent and children of these parents lack social. Permissive parents are child-centered and children of these parents are aggressive. a child’s competence. prosaical behavior. p. . emotional skills with least self-discipline. Berns (2010. Authoritarian parents are adultcentered and the children of these parents are withdrawn. authoritative. The usual parenting styles are authoritarian. That is why school builds on a child’s intellectual as well as social experiences. self-reliant. uninvolved and permissive type. distrustful fearful and discontent. cognitive. Eventually help them shape as a person in the society. School is one of the most important agent through which children learn socialization skills. self-discipline. For example. motivation for achievement and attachment can get affected. we can say that parent-child relationship is the most powerful socializing agent for a child. Researchers have found that different parenting styles have different impact on the children. explorative and cooperative. The school curriculum can help students familiarize with science.specifically. Berns (2010) describes the effects of different parenting styles. impulsive and have poor self-control with less selfreliance. Different styles have different positive and negative effects.
feel them as individual self and promote the feeling of independence. Social capabilities make one understand what others are feeling and what the intentions of others are. According to Berns. 2010. Bowen & Bowen. Then the individual can respond accordingly staying aware of his or her behavior. The third occurs through classroom interaction in the form of social relationship. 1998 comment that teachers’ support can help students gain god grades as they get encouraging and direct feedback from the teachers. the relationships among group members. social cognition denotes that notions and logic about people behavior. The interaction with peers let children compare themselves. p. Peer groups can act as reinforcing agent through their acceptance or rejection process. Berns (2010) comments that there is also the characteristic of apprenticeship in peer group interaction. The child knows how to conform to group norms in the society. Peer groups also help imitate through modeling. the rules as well as roles of a group and the knowledge of social behavior. .The first is through the education programs that instills achievement. The second is through formal organization leading to authority. 278. All these enhance the child’s social cognition and capability.
A child grows up in the community and so there are many effects of it. Berns (2010) comments that the neighborhood setting along with interactions in the community affect a child socially and personally. p. personal aspects greatly affect the growing up of a child. For example. The media is as if the whole world in miniscule. lack of personal space and lack of privacy. When the locality is densely populated. According to Berns. One can make innumerable mixes and predictions using the existing information. the social. and lack of resources. Let us take the example of the graphics and audio-visual elements of the computer that can enhance a child’s learning experiment. It can influence a child’s experiences and perceptions in many different ways. 2010. . the child has more socializing opportunities. decreased behavioral independence. Population density can affect physically. There are several aspects of a community. It can be a shaping agent for the child. Berns (2010) gives the example of how the experience of bathing can turn into a frightening thought for a child when he watches drowning scenes on television. the child can see how the storybook characters come live. A child can watch television and movies to get entertainment and at the same time. economic. densely populated community can also have negative effect like more than necessary social interaction. 365. The economics of the community is a great factor to affect a child’s healthcare and education.
The effects of the working of peer group shape a child’s attitude. A quality link can help the child grow better. Aunola. We may think of a child’s first day at the educational institution when the interrelationship is only with the school and his home. Vuori. Kiuru. The child then makes a link with the academic attainment. The mesosystem is developed of different connections and interrelationships of several microsystems in the development of a child.Mesosystem is another system that affects the development of a child. intellectual world. Berns (2010) states that . The school may have many probable links for the child. 2007 mention a report saying that members of any particular group usually have similar type of academic expectations and they adjust in the same fashion. Another important link is between community and school. The child’s socialization begins with the family and then school takes it to another level. That is why the link between the two institutions are important in shaping the child social. The influences are dependent on the quantity and quality of interrelationships. Berns. & Nurmi. 2010 comments that the link between school and family is of quality. it enhances the child’s academic attainment. Berns (2010) comments that the link between peers and school is also important. One of these links is the one between school and family that we have mentioned in earlier paragraph.
Child development is influenced by being linked with media. The school has a link with the non-parental childcare. There may be commercials programs. services and setting boundaries. Communities can choose to broadcast their own things. However. Nowadays the link between school and media is affecting a lot. and Elmo document projectors. there should be supervision in these programs. otherwise. A digital curriculum also has influences on the child. Now some classrooms also use LCD projectors. 174 reports that YMCA is equipped with trained .communities help school with funding for construction. communication through SMS or emails. McCollum (2011) comments that some school now use smart white boards with computerized system that help children enhance their skills in an enjoyable manner. Working parents are now keeping children at school for after or before school programs. The linkage with the community and media is one factor. iPods. Non-parental childcare with mesosystems affects a child. p. children may be under peer pressure. Children start to use social networking sites. Berns. YMCA is one good example where children get after school support. Satellite and cable television channels offer more than what a child should interact with. 2010. Peers and media link also enhances child’s development.
healthcare. social skills. Studies show that children from poor families have less confidence and tend to be involved in violence or crime. When the school fails to provide such services.professionals with recreational abilities. YMCA offers role models for single parent children so that these kids do not feel deprived of the missing parent. Moreover. they start to follow a parenting style that uses control. The third basic system is the exosystem that work through indirect influence on the child. the parents’ socioeconomic condition or the career of the parents is part of the exosystem. not democratic attitude. 22 reports that parents working in jobs that requires conforming to set rules. emotional. physical. There are other exosystems that include social services. Berns. The YMCA leaders help children acquire cognitive. clothing and shelter depends on these factors. All these influence the child’s development as his or her diet. For example. p. The fourth system is the macrosystem in Bronfenbrenner’s bioecological model to describe child development. city council and school boards. There is cultural context . YMCA takes care of the children from nearby neighborhood. They also provide transportations. 2010. commissions at federal or state level. It all relates to the setting the child is in.
That is why we see difference of expenditure for each student in different states. State governments decide about the education policies. The first amendment of the Constitution ensures . interaction. No Child Left Behind Act has been put into force to get rid of this problem. States with low financing for each student will experience poor academic performance. science. The intention of spending money for education is important. The educational policy happens to be one great aspect of school from the macrossytems perspective. lifestyles and changes matter.in the system and so poverty level. Skills and knowledge development is necessary for the society. ethnicity and socioeconomic status are important. Macrosytems work through the other three systems. The present day society has many influences from the macrosystems. In the macrossytem the subculture of the society works well to shape a child’s personality. beliefs. In this part the social beliefs. technology and ideologies. Education policy is influenced by religion. Taxes and some other financial resources are used to make programs and syllabi affordable. The Act asks explanation from schools about the students’ achievement. economics. That is why this system has a broader influence as it covers a broad spectrum of religion. Most states collect the money from property taxes to spend in education system. A society can only benefit if there is equal opportunity in the society. Funding is regulated by economics.
This is how a child starts to learn to empathize.freedom. A ball is bounced among the squares. Peer group and macrosystems influence the traditions and values of the society. That is why public funded schools cannot promote any particular religion. he has to leave the game. For example. Children learn sharing. empathy. and seeing another person’s perspective by working in the peer group. Peers usually do not hesitate to make comments when a member is acting in a different way. the state and the church are separate. Macrosystems and media are closely connected. when a child stumbles and falls. a child learns to respect rules. A child may even learn moral values from the game of four squares. This is how sociocultural values are developed. By participating in the game. The US has the influence of privatization of the mass .However. Technology decides what type of media and the type of content one may use. acquire appropriate social roles and achieve independence while developing identity. The media may get influenced by political factors. When a child fails to get hold of the ball. Children need to develop their moral values. Corporate sponsors can influence through economic power. In this game each of four children stands in one square. another child goes forward to help. With the peer groups children learn how to get on well others.
Macrosystems work through economics. Mesosystems also have direct interactions with the child but this system has links with . Equal opportunities can help. a society can influence how immigrants are adjusting. While we try to cope up with equity. According to Berns (2010). political ideology is at work. this can help the disabled or children from poor or ethnic families. It is true that bioecological model presented by Bronfenbrenner to explain human development and it is also true that child development is influences by all the four systems. But the systems work in different ways. political ideology. Values with social duty can have influence. Competition is another agent as found in the life of a child who gets prepared for real life through academic performances. and science and technology. For example. For example.media. The broadcast media is regulated by the Federal Communications Commission and the Federal Trade Commission. The content of media is usually rated according to the age restriction. These can have effect on non-parental childcare. Science and technology is pushing children to have required academic skills quite early. Microsystems act directly with the child with direct interaction. Any sexually explicit or violence rich content can influence a child. Vchips installed in television let parents block programs.
rather the system work through the linkage between two settings. microsystems. The systems are different but act in the same direction. community and media. Exosystems make use of a link but the child is not in direct link. the systems all other three systems. exosystems. . Macrosystems work in the subcultures and societies and according to Berns (2010). family. Macrosystems blend cultural patterns of the society like customs. and macrosystems. According to Berns (2010). The American psychologist explained how links between humans and the environment interact and influence the development. Urie Bronfenbrenner suggested a bioecological model to explain human development.Microsystems. morals and notions. Mesosystems work through different linkages with mesosystems. Microsystems work directly with the child through school. Exosystems affect the child’s development but do not work directly with the child. The model is made up of four systems: mesosystems. empirical studies have found that Bronfenbrenner’s bioecological model successfully applies to human development.
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