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Lecture 2

PSYC 2P12 Lecture 2: PSYC 2P12-feb 28.docx


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 2P12
Professor
Cathy Mondloch
Lecture
2

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PSYC 2P12- FEB 28, 2013
ADOLSCENCE
PHYSICAL DEVELOPMENT
- huge variation with height; grade 8 girls taller than boys; grade 9 boys extreme
growth
PUBERTY MATURATION
-primary sexual characteristics take adult form
- secondary sexual development: girls grow boobs, boy voices crack
- ability to reproduce is attained
HORMONE LEVELS
- changes in testosterone and estrogen
- drive physical changes; depends on whether male or female
HPG AXIS
- hypothalamus; once activated causes this chain reaction; timing varies across
individuals; varies depending on where you live in the world; varies on what
historical time you are growing up b/c one thing that triggers this cycle is body
fat; particular portion triggers the event
- pituitary gland
- gonads
- androgens/estrogens
INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES
- genetics (twin studies); variability in limitations of puberty; influences the timing
of puberty; compare siblings in terms of the onset of puberty, more similarity in
twins than non twins
- nutrition- 2 different ways how it influences development during puberty; girls-
weight gain during first 9 months of life, female infants who have high weight
gain during that first 9 months are much more likely to reach puberty a lot earlier;
girls with good nutrition get their period a lot sooner than those who are
malnourished
- stress can cause earlier puberty; for girls, who have a mom with power asserted
parenting styles facilitates puberty
VANDENBERG EFFECT
- if you take female mice and house them in different groups with only females and
if some groups are exposed to the odor to a new male, those female mice will
mature mice earlier than females who were not exposed to the odor of an
unfamiliar male
- the scent of a male is a chance to reproduce and pass genes on to next generation
in Canadian girls, puberty is facilitated by:
- father absence
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- high levels of stress
- when girls are stressed they tend to show internalizing behaviours; more likely to
get depressed; in response to stress they gain fat content
peaceful environment  delay onset of puberty, delay sexual activity, have stable
relationships
conflict & father absence  depression; weight gain; earlier sexual activity; unstable
relations
• current environment is best predictor of future environment
A GENETIC INTERPRETATION
- androgen receptor gene; x-linked, fathers pass on gene to daughters; related to
externalizing behaviours; 3 times more likely in males than females
- variation in males correlate to testosterone; higher levels of testosterone are
associated to higher level of external behaviours
- androgen receptors are sensitive to testosterone; affects activity of genes related to
testosterone
16- repeat allele:
• males: more impulsive, aggressive, have more sexual partners than males with
out this gene
• females: with gene are more likely to experience parental divorce, father
absence, more likely to experience early puberty, early sexual activity end up in
the environment with a husband absent
SEX DIFFERENCES
- boys: early puberty can be positive; more likely to make sports teams if you’re
really tall
- girls: early puberty has a lot of negative social consequences; girls are
embarrassed; attention from older kids; more likely to see themselves as being
over weight
RISK TAKING
- sexual behaviour
- driving
- getting in the car with someone who is drinking
- even smart kids can do stupid things
- vandalism
COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENT
- formal operations (Piaget): deal with situations you know aren’t real
• related to moral judgments; wife has a sickness and needs this pill but
husband cant afford it, is it okay to steal the drug if it will save her life?
• related to rebellion
- imaginary audience: idea that everybody is looking at me; I fell in
the hall and everybody saw me
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