Developmental Psychology is one of three areas of specialization in the Psychological Sciences Ph.D. program at the University of California, Merced.
While faculty members of the Developmental Psychology program have diverse interests and expertise, they are linked by a common focus on issues related to changes in psychological processes across the lifespan. Areas of emphasis include, but are not limited to, cognitive development, social development, emotional development, neuroscience and genetics. Additionally, while some faculty members focus on issues pertinent to typically developing children, others investigate atypical development (e.g., learning disabilities, developmental disorders and giftedness).
Developmental psychology as a field can be quite broad.
First, because our area addresses developmental questions, the study of developmental psychology can span the entire life cycle, from conception to old age.
Second, the field of developmental psychology can be a unifying source of multidisciplinary questions and collaborations involving experimental, social, community and health psychology, as well as quantitative methods, cognitive science and neuroscience, among others.
Third, developmental psychology fits nicely with translational and engagement efforts of the department and the university, and the findings from developmental research can often be readily applied to issues in the fields of education, family life and human health and treatment.