NIU Sociology The Cultural Nature of Human Development Essay

“Developmental-educational autobiography” essay questions:

Identify three topics, issues, and/or theories you read in Rogoff’s textbook and PDF readings.

Describe each one of these topics, issues, and/or theories by making direct and ample references to actual theories or research studies discussed in the readings (mention names of the theorists and/or researchers when possible. Show that you read and understood it and are able to apply it.)

Discuss how you relate each topic to how you because the person that you are today (i.e., in connection with/terms of each one of topics, issues, and/or theories).


Write clearly

Demonstrate that you understood and described the three topics, issues, and/or theories of your choice accurately and substantially by (1) providing detailed and concrete ideas and examples cited from the readings, and (2) relating each one of them meaningfully to your personal experiences and your discussion of “who you are” now.


“The Cultural Nature of Human Development.” By Barbara Rogoff

Rogoff, Ch. 6, pp., 200 – 207 (‘Inter-dependence with Autonomy’)

Understand the differences between “dependence,” “independence,” and “inter-dependence with autonomy.” 

Rogoff, Ch. 4 pp., 141 – 149 (‘Language Socialization’)

Understand the roles of ‘”language socialization” in one’s social development; that is, by learning and acquiring a language, not only do you learn how to use it, but to become a functioning member of a group(s) with which you participate.  

Identify and understand patterns of middle-class European American groups’ communication styles and their relations to dominant communicative styles at school.

Rogoff – Baumrind & other patterns (Rogoff, Ch., 6, pp. 207 – 216 

Consider how teachers and/or adults can influence children’s/students’ behavior through “control” or mutual “cooperation.” 

Consider how John Dewey’s philosophy of “democratic education” envisions the teacher-student relationships. 

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