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Child and Youth Studies
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John Mc Namara

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Child and Youth Studies CHYS 1F90
 Dr. J. McNamara Fall/Winter 2010 Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological Systems Theory Ecological Systems Theory  Detailed characterization of various environmental influences on development – Environment is a series of nested systems  Microsystem  Mesosystem  Exosystem  Macrosystem Ecological Systems Theory Contributions • richest description of environmental influences • suggests interventions for optimizing development at various levels of society Criticisms • generalizability from one environment to next questioned • not complete; a complement to existing theories Hereditary Influences on Children and youth – Principles of hereditary transmission – How are genes expressed? – Chromosomal and genetic abnormalities – Behavioural genetics – Determining heritability – Interaction of heredity and environment: Nature and Nurture Conception – Father’s sperm + Mother’s ovum = Zygote with 46 chromosomes in total – 23 from each parent Mitosis – Mitosis begins after fertilization – The process by which a cell separates chromosomes in its nucleus into two identical cells The Chromosomes – Each chromosome contains genes – Sections of chromosomes – Made up of DNA  The chemical code for development Why Not 50
% mom – 50
% dad? MMeiosis & Crossing-Over • Chromosomes within sperm cells divide in half before they fertilize an ovum or egg cell • Chromosomes with egg cells divide in half before they are fertilized • The “splitting” is random • The randomness creates variation in the resulting embryo • This complicated process is call “Meiosis” Male or Female? – 23 pair of chromosomes – Males have X and Y – Females have X and X – Sex of child determined by father’s sperm Male or Female? – Note 23 chromosome: What Do Genes Do? – Direct production of amino acids necessary for forming new cells – Guide cells to develop different parts of body – Regulate pace and timing of development – May “turn on” or “turn off” other genes – Impacted by environmental factors Gene Expression – Alleles influence many characteristics – One pair of genes – One member from mother, one from father – Simple dominant – recessive inheritance – some alleles are stronger than others  Dominant alleles  Recessive alleles
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