Topic: Lifestyle & Atypical Development critical essay

Assignment Title
A critical analysis of developmental theory and research to explain and manage developmental challenges highlighted in case study A or B.
Outline
There are two parts to this assignment; a critical essay (weighing 80%) and reflection (weighting 20%).

1.  You must choose ONE case study from the two provided below (in the next section). 
2.  Critical essay: You are required to critically analyse relevant developmental theories and research, and apply this knowledge to suggest ways to manage developmental challenges as highlighted in your chosen case study. 
a.  Draw on the knowledge you have developed during this unit through your engagement with the learning material and further reading.
3.  Reflection: You are also required to think about your professional development by critically reflecting on your experience of completing this assignment commencing from highlighting the developmental challenges in the case study through to making suggestions for managing these challenges.

Case studies

“Please choose ONE of the following case studies:

Case Study A:

Jamal is a 15 year old from Syria who arrived to the UK two years ago with his mother, father and two younger siblings. He has enrolled at the local school and is coming to the end of year 10. He is able to speak some English and struggles to articulate his ideas. Although his English has improved, he struggles to understand what his teachers are saying and so cannot access the curriculum. He misbehaves in school for this reason. He is bright but because of his difficulties with English he has been placed in a lower ability group. He has made friends with some of the children in this group. Although Jamal has experienced these difficulties at school, he is a confident boy who has settled in quite well at school and the teachers like him. When he first started school, he also expressed his hope to become a lawyer.

Jamal’s school friends are not the only children he socialises with. He is friends with a number of boys from the local mosque and plays football with them once a month. He does not see them very often because he does not attend the local mosque regularly. He spends most of his time with his school friends and has recently been going to shisha bars with them. His parents are aware of this and disprove of him going so they often argue. Jamal’s parents believe he is setting a bad example for his younger siblings who they believe look up to him. Additionally, his parents want him to do well at school. He told them of his hopes of becoming a lawyer and they refer to this often and expect him to work hard to achieve this. Jamal feels that he should obey his parents’ wishes and fulfil his obligations to support his parents by becoming a lawyer. However, Jamal does not always study due to his difficulties accessing the curriculum and he has not told his parents about his difficulties. His parents assume he is doing well because he seems happy otherwise.

More recently, Jamal’s interest in girls has increased because he sees his friends dating. He is aware that his parents would disapprove of a relationship because they believe his time would be better spent concentrating on his studies. Jamal is struggling with his feelings of being left out and being different from his group of friends, and abiding with his parents’ wishes.

Case Study B:

Sarah is in her mid-60s and has just retired from her job as a nurse at a GP practice. This feels like an end of an era for her as she has worked all her life, apart from when she had her children. She was contemplating retirement for 3 years and finally decided to retire this year. Her work colleagues and friends did not think she would retire for another couple of years and they lightly teased her about this. At her leaving party, she was told that she would be missed dearly. She said she would keep in touch and would still attend work related social events.

Sarah lives on her own and has done so for almost 20 years. Since retiring, Sarah has realised that her social interactions revolved around her work colleagues. Her day no longer has a routine and she has limited meaningful social interaction with other people. She is unsure of what to do during the day once she has completed her daily chores, which do not take much time, and she has walked around the town centre and the park she lives beside several times during the week.

She has a small family and her son and his family live nearby so Sarah’s weekend routine involves her seeing grandchildren. She is active and enjoys taking her grandchildren to the park. She would describe her relationship with them as very good. She also has another son who lives 200 miles away and does not see him and his children very often. She would love to see these grandchildren more often but has not been able to because she felt the journey to visit them was too long for a weekend trip. She does however, speak to them via video calls at least once a week.

Sarah loves travelling and used to travel once a year with her friend, Precious, who has also retired but now lives 50 miles away to be closer to her own children. Sarah has travelled on her own in the past and the last destination she visited was Tunisia. Although Sarah is very independent and enjoyed this trip, she feels she would prefer to travel with Precious or others rather than alone as she spends most of her week alone.

Learning outcomes and assessment criteria

This assignment will be assessed against the unit learning outcomes (LOs):
Critically examine psychological theories of human development.
Apply developmental concepts and theories to real world contexts.
Critically evaluate the methods and findings of key research studies in development.
Critically consider different approaches to managing developmental challenges.

Therefore the critical essay with reflection should:

Highlight the developmental challenges from ONE case study
Identify and critically analyse relevant developmental theories (LO1) and research (LO3) that can be applied to your chosen case study (LO2)
Use the above knowledge to critically consider the different ways to manage the developmental challenges (LO4) highlighted in the case study
Reflect on your professional development by focusing your critical reflection on your experience of completing this essay from the point of highlighting the developmental challenges through to making suggestions for managing these challenges (LO1-4)
Please see the unit handbook (pp. 5-6) for unit marking criteria.

Length of work

The critical essay with reflection must be no more than 3000 words and comprise of 2500 word critical essay (80% weighting) and 500 word reflection (20% weighting). Work exceeding the word count will be penalised. Information regarding penalties for exceeding the word limit can be found in the Programme Handbook.

There is no fixed penalty for submitting work that is below the limit. However, it is very difficult to demonstrate that the Learning Outcomes have been fully addressed, and evidence critical evaluation of sufficient depth if substantially below this number.

Word count
Included Excluded
Main body of text
Subheadings (if appropriate)
In-text referencing (citations)
Departmental cover sheet
Main title
Reference list (provided at the end of the document)


Further information/guidance

Full information on assessment submission can be found in the ‘Assessment Information and Submission’ section on the unit Moodle page.
Additional support for this assignment is provided in the ‘Assessment overview’ video and ‘Assessment support session’ (see unit Moodle page).
Information regarding penalties (word count, late work), marking etc. can be found in the Programme Handbook (see programme Moodle page).”

Type of service: Writing from scratch

Type of assignment: Critical essay

Subject: Psychology

Pages/words: 11/3000

Number of sources:

Academic level: Master’s

Paper format: Harvard

Line spacing: Double

Language:UK English

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