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Lecture 10

HDFS 1300 Lecture Notes - Lecture 10: Peer Pressure, Miscarriage, Human Sexual Activity

Educational Psychology
Course Code
HDFS 1300
Erica F Jordan

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Exam 2
Chapter 7: Choosing a Partner
What is dating?
o Dating: When two people meet at an agreed upon time and place to partake in
social activity
o Types of dating:
Going Steady
Pack Dating
Serious Dating
o Reasons for Dating
Biological Maturation leads us to become more interested in potential
romantic partners
Opportunity for sexual experimentation
Companionship and intimacy/closeness
Love and affection
Mate Selection
To obtain social status
Fulfilling ego needs
Big Business
o Researchers describe the dating process as a marriage market in which people
seek to attract a spouse with the highest number of desirable traits and the fewest
number of undesirable traits
o 3 Components of the marriage market are:
Supply of men and women
Personal preference that one is seeking in a mate
Personal resources that one can offer to a potential mate
How can we address dating violence?
o Dating violence: the perpetration or threat of act of violence against a person in
the context of a relationship, including sexual assault, physical abuse, and verbal
or emotional abuse
o Dating violence is quite prevalent:
88% of college students have experienced at least one incident of
emotional, verbal, and/or physical aggression from a dating partner
96% if high school students reported at least one incident of psychological
abuse and 59% of these reported sexual abuse
Females are more than twice as likely to experience dating violence than
Date rape is the act of forcing sexual intercourse on a nonconsenting
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85% of sexual assaults involve acquaintances of friends
Often unreported and unprosecuted
Sexual violence in general is high on college campuses. Factors such as
football game victories have even been correlated according to recent
studies by Jason Lindo of Texas A&M
o What can we do to stop dating violence?
Know your own sexual polices; decide when sexual intimacy is acceptable
to you
Communicate these policies openly and clearly
Avoid being alone with a person until you have communicated these
policies and believe that you can trust this person
Avoid using drugs or alcohol when you are with a person whom you do
not wish to be sexually intimate
If someone tries to force you to have sex, make sure your objections are
known: talk first, but struggle and scream if necessary
What do scientific theories say about how we choose mates?
o Theories of mate selection:
Parent Image Theory: States we are more likely to select mates who look
like our opposite sex parents
Ideal Mate Theory: States we are more likely to select mates that have
personality traits that we perceive are similar to our opposite sex parent
o Do Opposites attract?
Complementary Needs Theory
States we select mates who have needs opposite of our own
Examples of Opposite Complementary Needs
Certain personality traits
Certain behavior
Resources such as wealth and beauty
What are the limitations to this theory?
Couples tend to fair better when they are similar on certain traits
such as
o Physical attraction
o Core values
o Intelligence
o Openness to experiences
o Social status
o Exchange Theories
Work on the premises of cost benefits analysis; use the concepts of
rewards and costs to explain interpersonal attraction
o Developmental Process Theories
Describes mate selection as a process of narrowing down the vast number
of potential partners using a filtering system. Each filter reduces the field
of eligible until just one is selected (THE BACHLOR)
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Chapter 6 & 8: Sex and Fertility, Preparing for Children
What Influences Sexual Behavior?
o Proscriptive Norms: State what people should avoid doing
Ex: Unprotected sex; avoid nonconsensual sex
o Prescriptive Norms: State what people should do
EX: Use protection; date people who are of legal age; be clear about what
is acceptable physical contact within the relationship
o Cultural universals: beliefs that are common to all known cultures
EX: Incest is taboo
o Sexual Norms in a Culture
Rules and expectations about appropriate ways to channel sexual desires;
these norms regulate sexual behavior in cultures
o Overall relationship satisfaction, especially for women
o Women tend to be less satisfied but also view satisfaction as less necessary; this
trend has been changing
o Gay couples tend to be more sexually active than lesbian couples
o Marital Status: Married couples may be more satisfied with their sex lives than
their single counter partners
o Consistency and frequent orgasms
o Satisfaction with sexual behaviors other than intercourse
o Religious views of sex- whether or not it is seen as for enjoyment or for
procreation only:
Sexual confidence
Young age report more satisfaction
Body image
Physical health
Mental health and stress
Hormone changes with age
o External Affairs: In a country where 90% of people believe extramarital affairs
are always wrong, what leads people to cheat on their spouse?
In a 1984 study: 65-70% of men and 45-65% of women had at least one
extramarital affair
Unrealistic expectation about love, passion, marriage and sex
Expectation that monogamy will be easy
Feelings of sexual rejection or unfulfilled needs
Ease of access and perceived anonymity
Women have unfulfilled emotional needs
Men feel more sexually rejected
How is fertility changing in the United States?
o Fertility
Fertility refers to actual reproduction (or the rate of fertility)
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