Nelson Higher Education

Higher Education

Human Development: A Life-Span View, 7th Edition

  • Robert V. Kail
  • John C. Cavanaugh
  • ISBN-10: 130511664X
  • ISBN-13: 9781305116641
  • 720 Pages | Hardcover
  • Previous Editions: 2013, 1996
  • COPYRIGHT: 2016 Published
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About the Product

Balanced coverage of the entire life span is just one thing that distinguishes HUMAN DEVELOPMENT: A LIFE-SPAN VIEW, Seventh Edition. With its comprehensive, succinct, and applied coverage, the text has proven its ability to capture students' interest while introducing them to the issues, forces, and outcomes that make us who we are. Robert V. Kail's expertise in childhood and adolescence, combined with John C. Cavanaugh's extensive research in gerontology, result in a book with a rich description of all life-span stages and important topics. A modified chronological approach traces development in sequential order from conception through late life, while also dedicating several chapters to key topical issues. This organization also allows the book to be relatively briefer than other texts, a benefit given the enormous amount of information covered in the course. The authors provide theoretical and empirical foundations that enable students to become educated, critical interpreters of developmental information. A blend of basic and applied research, as well as coverage of controversial topics and emergent trends, demonstrates connections between the laboratory and life.


  • The authors' modified chronological treatment reduces redundancy and emphasizes the integrated biopsychosocial model of human development over the course of the life span. This organization also allows the book to be briefer (just 16 chapters) and more manageable for a one-semester course.

  • Carefully crafted pedagogy in each section includes a set of learning objectives, a vignette, typically one or more "Think About It" questions in the margin to encourage critical thinking, and end-of-section "Test Yourself" questions that reinforce key messages. For easy assignment and to help readers visually organize the material, major units within each chapter are numbered.

  • Chapter pedagogy includes a chapter-opening table of contents; a bulleted chapter-ending summary, organized by learning objective within each major section; and a list of key terms (with page references).

  • Adolescent development is covered in two chapters--physical/cognitive development and socioemotional development--to give each topic the coverage appropriate for most courses.

  • The book's three special features--"Spotlight on Research," "Real People," and "What Do You Think?"--are a significant reason why this textbook is unique. To help students stay focused on the content, these features are woven seamlessly yet distinctively into the narrative rather than being boxed off from the flow of the chapter. Each feature appears in nearly every chapter.

  • Each "Spotlight on Research" feature highlights a specific study discussed in the text, helping students understand the science and scope of life-span development.

  • "Real People: Applying Human Development" features illustrate how a development issue is manifested in the life of a real person.

  • "What Do You Think?" features ask students to think critically about social and developmental issues.

About the Author

Robert V. Kail

Robert V. Kail is Distinguished Professor of Psychological Sciences at Purdue University. His undergraduate degree is from Ohio Wesleyan University and his Ph.D. is from the University of Michigan. Kail is editor of Child Development Perspectives and editor emeritus of Psychological Science. He received the McCandless Young Scientist Award from the American Psychological Association, was named the Distinguished Sesquicentennial Alumnus in Psychology by Ohio Wesleyan University, and is a fellow of the Association for Psychological Science. Kail has also written CHILDREN AND THEIR DEVELOPMENT and SCIENTIFIC WRITING FOR PSYCHOLOGY. His research focuses on cognitive development during childhood and adolescence.

John C. Cavanaugh

John C. Cavanaugh is President and CEO of the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Delaware and his Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame. Cavanaugh is a fellow of the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science, and the Gerontological Society of America, and has served as president of the Adult Development and Aging Division (Division 20) of the APA. Cavanaugh has also written (with the late Fredda Blanchard-Fields) ADULT DEVELOPMENT AND AGING. His research interests in gerontology concern family caregiving as well as the role of beliefs in older adults' cognitive performance.

Table of Contents

1. The Study of Human Development.
2. Biological Foundations: Heredity, Prenatal Development, and Birth. 
3. Tools for Exploring the World: Physical, Perceptual, and Motor Development. 
4. The Emergence of Thought and Language: Cognitive Development in Infancy and Early Childhood. 
5. Entering the Social World: Socioemotional Development in Infancy and Early Childhood. 
6. Off to School: Cognitive and Physical Development in Middle Childhood. 
7. Expanding Social Horizons: Socioemotional Development in Middle Childhood. 
8. Rites of Passage: Physical and Cognitive Development in Adolescence. 
9. Moving Into the Adult Social World: Socioemotional Development in Adolescence. 
10. Becoming an Adult: Physical, Cognitive, and Personality Development in Young Adulthood. 
11. Being With Others: Forming Relationships in Young and Middle Adulthood. 
12. Work, Leisure, and Retirement. 
13. Making It in Midlife: The Biopsychosocial Challenges of Middle Adulthood. 
14. The Personal Context of Later Life: Physical, Cognitive, and Mental Health Issues. 
15. Social Aspects of Later Life: Psychosocial, Retirement, Relationship, and Societal Issues. 
16. The Final Passage: Dying and Bereavement. 
Name Index. 
Subject Index.

New to this edition

  • This edition is available with MindTap™, an online personalized learning experience built on the text's content. MindTap--which integrates seamlessly with Learning Management Systems--combines readings, multimedia, activities, and assessments into a Learning Path that guides students through their course. Instructors can customize the content and learning tools if they wish; for instance, by adding their own content and exercises.
  • MindTap for Kail/Cavanaugh elevates thinking from basic knowledge to application and decision making, and engages students to apply course concepts to daily life and careers. The “Investigate Development” simulation puts students in real-life roles where they observe, evaluate, and make decisions about human development.
  • Material on neuroscience is integrated throughout the text. This new theme is introduced in Chapter 1, "The Study of Human Development."
  • The book's "Spotlight on Research" features highlight such new topics as the links between maternal depression and children's behavior (Ch. 2), infants' grasping (Ch. 3), why exposure to parents' speech increases children's vocabulary (Ch. 4), programs for treating eating disorders (Ch. 8), programs to reduce dating abuse (Ch. 9), and the costs of holding in grief for the sake of one's partner (Ch. 16).
  • New topics in the text's "Real People" feature include Lena Horne (Ch. 1); Ella Maria Yelich-O'Connor, better known as Lorde (Ch. 10); a lesbian's experiences (Ch. 11); Pete Seeger (Ch. 15); and computer science instructor Randy Pausch's "Last Lecture" (Ch. 16).


All supplements have been updated in coordination with the Main title.
Please see Main title page for new to this edition information.

Instructor Supplements

Online Instructor's Resource Manual  (ISBN-10: 1305506480 | ISBN-13: 9781305506480)
Online PowerPoint® Slides  (ISBN-10: 1305506499 | ISBN-13: 9781305506497)

This valuable manual contains teaching and exercise tips and other lecture resources. The Instructor's Manual is available electronically on the password-protected section of the Instructor Resource Website.

Cengage Testing, powered by Cognero® Instant Access  (ISBN-10: 1305501861 | ISBN-13: 9781305501867)

Cengage Learning Testing Powered by Cognero® is a flexible, online system that allows you to: import, edit, and manipulate test bank content from the book's test bank or elsewhere, including your own favorite test questions; create multiple test versions in an instant; and deliver tests from your LMS, your classroom, or wherever you want.

MindTap Psychology, 1 term (6 months) Instant Access for Kail/Cavanuagh's Human Development: A Life-Span View  (ISBN-10: 1305265130 | ISBN-13: 9781305265134)

MindTap Psychology for Kail/Cavanaugh's Human Development, 7th Edition is a personalized teaching experience with relevant assignments that guide students to analyze, apply, and improve thinking, allowing you to measure skills and outcomes with ease. Personalized teaching becomes yours through a Learning Path built with key student objectives and your syllabus in mind. Control what students see and when they see it. Relevant readings, multimedia, and activities are designed to take students up the levels of learning, from basic knowledge to analysis and application. Analytics and reports provide a snapshot of class progress, time in course, engagement and completion rates. In addition to the benefits of the platform, MindTap for Human Development: A Life-Span View includes interactive activities drawn from the "What Do You Think?" and "Real People" text features that foster student participation through polls, photo shares, and discussion threads; as well as illustrative video embedded in the MindTap Reader to highlight key concepts. "Investigate Development" activities enable students to think critically about research and see the implications of research on a personal level. Students interact with simulated case studies of milestones in a person's development, observing and analyzing audio-visual cues, consulting research, and making decisions.

LMS Integrated for MindTap Psychology, 1 term (6 months) Instant Access  (ISBN-10: 130550853X | ISBN-13: 9781305508538)

Student Supplements

MindTap Psychology, 1 term (6 months) Instant Access for Kail/Cavanuagh's Human Development: A Life-Span View  (ISBN-10: 1305265130 | ISBN-13: 9781305265134)

MindTap Psychology for Kail/Cavanaugh's Human Development, 7th Edition provides you with the tools you need to better manage your limited time -- you can complete assignments whenever and wherever you are ready to learn with course material specially customized for you by your instructor and streamlined in one proven, easy-to-use interface. With an array of tools and apps -- from note taking to flashcards -- you'll get a true understanding of course concepts, helping you to achieve better grades and setting the groundwork for your future courses. Access to this product is valid for 6 months of usage.

LMS Integrated for MindTap Psychology, 1 term (6 months) Instant Access  (ISBN-10: 130550853X | ISBN-13: 9781305508538)