Singapore University of Social Sciences

Human Growth and Life-Span Development (Birth to Adolescence)

Human Growth and Life-Span Development (Birth to Adolescence) (SWK104)

Applications Open: 01 May 2023

Applications Close: 15 June 2023

Next Available Intake: July 2023

Course Types: To be confirmed

Language: English

Duration: 6 months

Fees: $1378

Area of Interest: Social Services

Schemes: To be confirmed

Funding: To be confirmed

School/Department: S R Nathan School of Human Development


This course covers the developmental changes, issues, and challenges in human development from birth to adolescence with special reference to the physical, cognitive, and socioemotional aspects of human growth and development. The life span perspective explored here is viewed as lifelong, multidimensional, plastic, multidisciplinary, and contextual. This perspective actively involves growth, maintenance, and regulation. The course will also examine contemporary concerns from birth through adolescence. Presented in depth and breadth, and supplemented with interactive, hands-on tutorial activities and online forums, this course will provide the students with a solid foundation in the knowledge of human growth and life span development as they prepare for a career in the helping profession. The course also discusses developmental issues and social concerns related to the various stages of the life-span such as issues on parenting children and adolescents, child-abuse, juvenile, eating disorder etc., all of which have implications for a career in the helping profession.

Level: 1
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY REGULAR SEMESTER
E-Learning: BLENDED - Learning is done MAINLY online using interactive study materials in Canvas. Students receive guidance and support from online instructors via discussion forums and emails. This is supplemented with SOME face-to-face sessions. If the course has an exam component, this will be administered on-campus.


  • What is life-span development?
  • Theories of Development
  • Physical growth and Cognitive Development in Infancy
  • Socioemotional Development in Infancy
  • Physical development in Early Childhood
  • Cognitive development in Early Childhood
  • Socioemotional Development in Early Childhood
  • Physical Development in Middle and Late Childhood
  • Cognitive Development in Middle and Late Childhood
  • Socioemotional Development in Middle and Late Childhood
  • Physical and cognitive development in Adolescence
  • Socioemotional Development in Adolescence

Learning Outcome

  • Define the concept of life-span development and the main characteristics of life-span perspective.
  • Discuss the overview of the main theories and research challenges in life-span development.
  • Identify the major milestones in the human life-span and the key changes within them.
  • Discuss the contemporary issues in various developmental stages from birth to adolescence.
  • Apply the knowledge base in life-span development to enhance the understanding of clients from the various age groups.
  • Analyse the role of life-span development in conducting case work.
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