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Human development involves the growth and change of physical, psychological, and social characteristics across the life-span (Smith et al., 2001) and is conventionally viewed as proceeding through a series of stages, with each of these associated with normative, age related developmental tasks. Competing explanations of those forces bringing about development are apparent within the literature, each reflecting differing emphases on the roles of ‘nature’ (genetic inheritance) and ‘nurture’ (environmental influences) and contrasting perspectives on the developing person as either a passive expression of inborn and/or environmental forces or an active participant in their own development. Competing explanations carry with them correspondingly competing prescriptions for approaches to responding to developmental needs.

Key Points
  • Delays (and sometimes differences) in the development of people who have a learning disability ...

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