Course Information

Marjorine Henriquez-Castillo
PhD Developmental Psychology
Doctoral Lecturer and Major Advisor
Lehman College, CUNY

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Thursdays 5:00 – 6:00 PM, Room 107F or Zoom:

Course Days & Time

Tuesdays, 2:00 – 4:40 PM,  Room Gillet 319. Section Q301.


Child Growth and Development (Paris, Ricardo, Rymond, and Johnson) It’s free and available as a pdf or webpage!

This course delves into child development from prenatal to middle childhood, examining genetic, biological, and social contextual contributions. We’ll explore physical, cognitive, and socioemotional and personality domains, considering sociocultural influences like race, sex, gender, and social class. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach, we’ll cover history, theory, policy, and research beyond mainstream psychology. Through readings, discussions, activities, and media, we’ll analyze how various factors shape child developmental outcomes.


The field of child development is expansive and diverse; thus, it was difficult to narrow down all the interesting topics that provide a comprehensive overview of the field. As a result, the course is designed to be a “choose your own adventure” experience where in addition to having access to the the textbook (reading the textbook is optional), you will choose ONE peer-reviewed journal article to read each week out of the multiple readings assigned (reading the article is required). We’ll co-create the required reading list together. You can choose from my suggestions or choose your own articles (with my approval, of course!). This is your chance to personalize your learning journey and delve into topics that spark your curiosity.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of the course students should be able to:

  • Understand and critique basic psychological theories, principles, and perspectives on Child Psychology.
  • Describe and discuss strengths and weaknesses of research methodologies typically used in Child Psychology.
  • Describe, compare, and contrast key changes in the physical, cognitive, and socioemotional characteristics across childhood. 
  • Relate our discussions of child development to examples from observations and/or personal experiences outside of the classroom.

Student Expectations

Technology Use: This course embraces online technology. All course materials will be posted on our very own CUNY Commons website! (Yes, not blackboard!) Therefore, access to an electronic device (phone, laptop, tablet) is essential. Participating in this class without computer access may present challenges. Fortunately, Lehman College provides convenient computer borrowing options for students who may need temporary access. Visit this link for details. Laptops, phones, and tablets are permitted for note-taking and approved activities that enhance learning. To ensure a focused learning environment, please refrain from using them for unrelated tasks. If you need to make a phone call, please step into the hallway. If laptop use or phone calls become disruptive to your learning or that of others, I may kindly request you to refrain from using them in class

Use of email: For urgent matters or questions not addressed in class, feel free to reach out via email. Please include “PSYCH 217” in the subject line and sign off with your name. To avoid delays, kindly check the syllabus and our website first for answers to common questions or technical issues. I prioritize responding to emails that require my specific attention.

Attendance and Lateness: Active engagement is key to a enriching learning experience for everyone. This includes attending classes regularly, arriving on time, and actively participating in discussions and activities. We’ll often collaborate in pairs or groups, so your presence and contributions matter. We all face challenges sometimes. If an emergency, illness, religious observance, or other valid reason prevents you from attending, please let me know as soon as possible. An email before the class meeting is appreciated. Frequent absences and tardiness will adversely affect your overall grade.

Readings and Assignments: To fully engage in our course discussions and activities, it’s crucial to stay up-to-date with the assigned readings by the dates listed on the syllabus. This ensures you’re well-prepared to contribute your insights and deepen your understanding of the material. If you miss a class, connect with your peers to access lecture notes or key points, and feel free to reach out to me during office hours or via email for any clarifications you need. If you have scheduling conflicts, reading challenges, or require any adjustments, please communicate with me early so we can explore solutions together. I’ll provide timely feedback on your work (within 1-2 weeks) to keep you informed of your progress and help you identify areas for growth. The syllabus is our guide, but we’re in this together! If any due dates need to change, we’ll discuss it as a class and I’ll update the syllabus accordingly. There won’t be any surprises.

Respect & Privacy: In our classroom, open and honest discussions are valued. However, respecting the privacy of our classmates is equally important. Information shared during class, whether personal or sensitive, should remain confidential within this learning community. It’s crucial that we avoid repeating or discussing such information outside of the course. This classroom strives to be a safe and supportive space where everyone feels comfortable participating, asking questions, and expressing their thoughts without fear of judgment or repercussions. My door is always open if you want to discuss personal matters beyond the scope of the course. This includes anxieties, challenges related to your college experience, career aspirations, or anything else you might require support with.Together, we can create a respectful, informative, fun, and supportive environment where everyone can learn, grow, and thrive. Thank you for your commitment to upholding this vital principle.

Course Withdrawal: The last day to withdraw from the course for a grade of “W” is Wednesday, 05/15/2024. Consult the Academic Calendar for other deadlines or the Academic Standards FAQs for more details on the attendance policy.

Academic Integrity: This course thrives on collaborative learning and independent thinking, both grounded in the principles of academic integrity. As students and scholars, we share a responsibility to uphold these principles through completing your own wrk with honesty and effort, correctly using and documenting sources and ideas to avoid plagiarism, respecting the intellectual property of others. Lehman College has a strict policy against academic dishonesty, including plagiarism, cheating, and falsification of information. Any violation of this policy will be taken seriously and may result in a zero on the assignment in question. To ensure everyone understands and upholds these principles, I encourage you to familiarize yourself with Lehman College’s comprehensive academic integrity policy. This resource provides detailed information and guidance on proper citation, ethical research practices, and consequences of academic dishonesty. To view more details on academic integrity policies visit .

AI Statement: I recognize the growing presence of AI writing tools and their potential to assist with certain aspects of the writing process. However, it’s crucial to remember that writing remains a craft that requires creativity, critical thinking, and development of your own unique voice and skills. Therefore, AI tools may be used in this class to edit work you have already created yourself and with proper citation. We will discuss appropriate citation methods and ethical considerations for utilizing these tools responsibly.