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PSYC 2130 Syllabus

Course Syllabus

PSYC 2130 - Life Span Development Psychology (formerly Life Span Psychology )

3 Credit Hours

Course Information

Course Description:

This course surveys the biological and environmental factors influencing the physical, intellectual, social, emotional, and language development from birth until death. It explores causes and results of interruption in or interference with the developmental process. This course surveys the changes individuals go through from conception to death or from "womb to tomb". The aspects of development including biological, social, cognitive, emotional, and moral will be covered. The theme of this course is change. We will examine how the abilities, needs, problems, and concerns of humans change throughout life, and how people are shaped by their experiences throughout their development. 

Course Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will:

  •  Demonstrate a beginning understanding of theories, methods and research findings of life-span psychology.
  •  Describe how people change in terms of their cognitive abilities, psychosocial development (including moral reasoning, affective development, and personality development), and biosocial status through the lifespan.
  •  Compare and contrast the major developmental theorists and discuss what each brings to or adds to the study of human development.
  •  Summarize and evaluate the research on the relative contributions of heredity (nature) versus environment (nurture) to various aspects of development.
  •  Identify some of the factors that put people at increased risk for developing psychological problems at each stage of the lifespan.
  •  Formulate and reflect on one’s own life story and the stories of those close to them.
Prerequisites & Co-requisites:

Students must possess reading and writing proficiency appropriate for a college-level course. An introductory psychology course is recommended.

Course Topics:

The course begins with an overview and introduction to human growth and development from a lifespan perspective, including an explanation of the three domains of development: biosocial, cognitive, and psychosocial (emotional). 

  •  Theories of development follow throughout the lifespan from conception through death. 
  • The relative influence of hereditary and environment and the impact of genetic factors are covered throughout the lifespan.
  •  Each developmental age/stage is studied and each of the three domains included.
  •  The stages are: prenatal development and birth, infants and toddlers, early childhood, middle childhood, adolescence, early, middle and late adulthood, and issues related to death and dying.
  •  Topics are covered in sequential order. 
Specific Course Requirements:

Students need to be proficient in using a computer, navigating the Internet, and using e-mail, word

processing software and the Learning Management System. 

Textbooks, Supplementary Materials, Hardware and Software Requirements

Required Textbooks:

Please visit the Virtual Bookstore to obtain textbook information for this course. Move your cursor over the "Books" link in the navigation bar and select "Textbooks & Course Materials." Select your Program, Term, Department, and Course; then select "Submit."

Supplementary Materials:

MyPsychLab is not a requirement for this course; however, if you choose to purchase this supplemental resource, please follow the directions through the link under Getting Started, MyPsychLab.

Hardware and Software Requirements:

Minimum hardware requirements can be found here.

Minimum software requirements can be found here.

Common applications you might need:

Web Resources:

Purdue OWL Online Writing Lab (for APA, MLA, or Chicago style)

The Writing Center Online Writer's Handbook

Student Resources:
  • Technical support information can be found on the TN eCampus Help Desk page.
  • Smarthinking virtual tutoring is available FREE of charge. to access Smarthinking, visit the course homepage and select Smarthinking under Course Resources. You also view sample sessions to see what Smarthinking offers and how it works.
  • Information on other student issues or concerns can be located on the TN eCampus Student Resources page.

Instructor Information

Please see "Instructor Information" in the Getting Started Module for instructor contact information, virtual office hours, and other communication information. You can expect to receive a response from the instructor within 24-48 hours unless notified of extenuating circumstances.

Participation, Assessments, & Grading

Testing Procedures:

All testing is completed online. There are five unit exams and 19 chapter quizzes which are taken in sequential order and have specific "due dates" (see the Calendar found under the Course Tools navigation group). The unit exams do not require you to come on campus. Once you start an exam you will need to complete it because it cannot be reopened. The chapter quizzes are in multiple choice format. Exams and quizzes will be reviewed once submitted. 

Grading Procedures:

Grading is based upon an accumulation of 1000 points from various required assignments. The requirements are: taking the five unit exams - each exam has a point value of 60 points (maximum of 300 points); complete 19 chapter quizzes - each quiz has a point value of 10 points (maximum of 190 points), complete two papers, (maximum of 200 points); actively participating in discussion topics; each topic is worth 30 points and there are 10 topics (maximum of 300 points), plus the introduction of yourself which is required as your initial check-in (maximum of 10 points). Submitting exams, quizzes or the papers late results in a 50% point reduction. Discussions cannot be made up. Due dates are included in the Calendar and listed in the Due Dates for All Assignments page under the Course Content. 

Grading Scale:
   Point Range        Assigned Grade 
900 - 1000 Points                 A
800 - 899 Points                 B
700 -799 Points                 C
600 - 699 Points                 D
under 625 Points                 F


Assignments and Projects:

Unit Exams 

There are five unit exams that cover the content of the entire text. The exams are broken into units. Each unit exam is multiple choice questions and worth 60 points total. The exams are located under assessments. 

  • Unit Exam 1 – Chapters 1-3
  • Unit Exam 2 – Chapters 4-6
  •  Unit Exam 3 – Chapters 7-10
  •  Unit Exam 4 – Chapters 11-14
  •  Unit Exam 5 – Chapters 15-19 
Class Participation:

It is necessary for students to read the email through our D2L course. It is the responsibility of the student to check email and announcements on a daily basis for updates. Through the discussion board students will have the opportunity to interact with other students. Weekly announcements or updates will be made through the Course Home page under Weekly Announcements. 

Late Policy:

This course has specified deadlines for assignments. It is the responsibility of the students to check the calendar due dates so as to not miss deadlines. Be sure to read the entire Syllabus before beginning the course and review all of the assignment due dates and requirements. Submitting exams, quizzes or the papers late results in a 50% point reduction. 

Course Ground Rules

The following two statements (1., 2.) were derived from the TBR System-wide Student Rules document, released January 2012:


Read the document in its entirety here.

1. Standards of Conduct:

  • Students are required to adhere to the same professional, legal and ethical standards of conduct online as on campus. In addition, students should conform to generally accepted standards of "netiquette" while sending e-mail, posting comments to the discussion board, and while participating in other means of communicating online. Specifically, students should refrain from inappropriate and/or offensive language, comments and actions.

2. Review the TN eCampus Academic Integrity/Academic Honesty Policy:

  • In their academic activities, students are expected to maintain high standards of honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is prohibited.

Such conduct includes, but is not limited to:

  • an attempt by one or more students to use unauthorized information in the taking of an exam
  • to submit as one's own work, themes, reports, drawings, laboratory notes, computer programs, or other products prepared by another person,
  • or to knowingly assist another student in obtaining or using unauthorized materials.

Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty are prohibited.

Students guilty of academic misconduct, either directly or indirectly through participation or assistance, are subject to disciplinary action through the regular procedures of the student’s home institution.  Refer to the student handbook provided by your home institution to review the student conduct policy.

In addition to other possible disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed, the instructor has the authority to assign an "F" or zero for an activity or to assign an "F" for the course.

Other Course Rules:

Students are expected to:

  • Participate in all aspects of the course
  • Communicate with other students
  • Learn how to navigate in Brightspace
  • Keep abreast of course announcements
  • Use the assigned course management (Brightspace) email address rather than a personal email address
  • Address technical problems immediately:
  • Observe course netiquette at all times.

Guidelines for Communications


  • Always include a subject line.
  • Remember without facial expressions some comments may be taken the wrong way. Be careful in wording your emails. Use of emoticons might be helpful in some cases.
  • Use standard fonts.
  • Do not send large attachments without permission.
  • Special formatting such as centering, audio messages, tables, html, etc. should be avoided unless necessary to complete an assignment or other communication.
  • Respect the privacy of other class members


  • Review the discussion threads thoroughly before entering the discussion. Be a lurker then a discussant.
  • Try to maintain threads by using the "Reply" button rather starting a new topic.
  • Do not make insulting or inflammatory statements to other members of the discussion group. Be respectful of other’s ideas.
  • Be patient and read the comments of other group members thoroughly before entering your remarks.
  • Be cooperative with group leaders in completing assigned tasks.
  • Be positive and constructive in group discussions.
  • Respond in a thoughtful and timely manner.


The Tennessee Virtual Library is available to all students enrolled in TN eCampus programs and courses. Links to library materials (such as electronic journals, databases, interlibrary loans, digital reserves, dictionaries, encyclopedias, maps, and librarian support) and Internet resources needed by learners to complete online assignments and as background reading will be included within the course modules. To access the Virtual Library, go to the course homepage and select the Virtual Library link under Course Resources.

Students with Disabilities

Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable and necessary academic accommodations if determined eligible by the appropriate disability services staff at their home institution. Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student's eligibility for specific accommodations from the disability services staff at the home institution. It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with their home institution's disability services staff and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.

Syllabus Changes

The instructor reserves the right to make changes as necessary to this syllabus. If changes are necessitated during the term of the course, the instructor will immediately notify students of such changes both by individual email communication and posting both notification and nature of change(s) on the course bulletin board.


The information contained in this syllabus is for general information purposes only. While we endeavor to keep this information up-to-date and accurate, there may be some discrepancies between this syllabus and the one found in your online course. The syllabus of record is the one found in your online course. Please make sure you read the syllabus in your course at the beginning of the semester. Questions regarding course content should be directed to your instructor.

Last Revised on July 27, 2018