For this first assignment in your course project, you will select a human development or behavior topic (problem or issue) and identify the affected population

For this first assignment in your course project, you will select a human development or behavior topic (problem or issue) and identify the affected population that is of interest to you. You may focus on any stage of human development across the life cycle. Your topic must be applicable to an assessment of early intervention, prevention, and advocacy services in your community. If your topic is quite broad, focus on some aspect of it. For example, instead of selecting the topic of bullying in general, select a specific population and issue, such as social media cyber-bullying among adolescent females, the beginnings of bullying in early elementary age children, or employee-on-employee bullying in the workplace.

Present the practical problem in society that drives the research on this topic or issue and the population affected. This should be based on your preliminary review of current literature, citing at least five current research studies (published within the past five years) that support the importance of this issue. This assignment should be approximately 2 pages in length.

Important Note About the Project

Keep in mind that you will not be collecting data from the people who are experiencing the problem you are exploring (that is, the teen who is pregnant, the student who has been bullied, the woman who has been abused, the adult who was abused as a child, the parent of a child with autism, et cetera). That would require IRB approval and is not the focus of this course.

Instead you will be exploring the activities and services being carried out in the community. Who are the stakeholders actually involved in prevention, early intervention, and advocacy efforts on behalf of the population experiencing the difficult circumstances or need? What creative solutions are happening? Who is advocating for this population? What prevention efforts are happening? In addition to exploring obvious prevention and advocacy groups, do some networking to discover groups you would not at first think might be actively involved in prevention and advocacy related to your topic.

Early intervention may also be considered in your exploration because it may be a better fit, depending on your topic. For example, autism cannot be prevented; early detection and intervention is critical. In addition, services provided to prevent family crisis due to stress in the family with a child with autism might be on your radar, depending on the focus of your project.

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