Evolutionary developmental psychology (EDP) is described and contrasted with previous (e.g., sociobiology) and other contemporary (e.g., mainstream evolutionary psychology) approaches to applying evolutionary theory to human behavior. We argue that understanding the ‘whys’ of development will help us acquire a better understanding of the ‘hows’ and ‘whats’ of development, and that in addressing the ‘whys’ an EDP perspective has the potential to provide a fuller understanding of human ontogeny. To this end, we propose five ways of applying EDP to contemporary issues of psychological development. These include (1) classifying developmental features according to their evolutionary or functional status, (2) proposing hypotheses and microtheories to explore the function of developmental traits, (3) collecting data from different sources to test developmental evolutionary hypotheses, (4) describing the phylogenetic and sociocultural history of human developmental features and (5) designing ‘evolutionary experiments’. We argue that an EDP approach should not be seen as replacing other, more proximal, explanations of development, but rather that an evolutionary perspective should be incorporated in all accounts of human ontogeny.

This content is only available via PDF.
Copyright / Drug Dosage / Disclaimer
Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.
You do not currently have access to this content.