Evidence of the theories and concepts we have been discussing in class is everywhere. The goal of this
assignment is to look for and analyze a current policy in light of what you have learned in your Developmental
Psychology class. Policies can be at the federal, state, local, or even private corporation level. The policy you
select should in some way affect the lives of people in a specific age group. For example, a maternity leave
policy may affect at what age a couple chooses to have children, so the policy will affect the timing of that
transition. Or, the drinking age policy may affect at what age individuals in a society attain full adult status. A
good place to start would be on the websites of the government (federal, state, local) or on company HR
websites. Any policy, as long as it is relevant to the lives of a specific age group (e.g. economic policies, family
policies, workplace procedure policies, laws) is acceptable.
You may choose to do your critique in a brief paper if you choose instead.
a) Apply solid life-course research/theory to your policy
b) Critique the policy in terms of the how it may affect people in the time developmental period you selected.
Questions you may want to address in your presentation include (but are not limited to):
• What is the purpose of the policy?
• Are there any biases that may be present in the creation of the policy?
• How does life-course theory (or other developmental theories/research presented in class) apply to your
policy (e.g. How does it affect transitions or trajectories? How does it affect physical, cognitive, or socioemotional development?)
• What effects might this policy have on the lives of those in the time period you chose? Are there other
developmental periods that might also be affected?
• What does the current research (e.g. from your text, notes, or module readings) say about the effects of
policies like the one you selected?
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