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Developmental Psychology Essay

776 words - 4 pages

Biological & Environmental
Chapter 2
Developmental Psychology

Genotype vs. Phenotype
- Genetic makeup
of the individual

- Directly observable

Genetic Foundations
Some definitions…
 Genes: Basic unit of genetic information
 Chromosomes: rod-like portions of DNA
which store/transmit genetic information

46 chromosomes in each cell (23 pairs)

DNA: deoxyribonucleic acid; chemical
substance that makes up genes,

DNA duplicates itself through mitosis
 Permits a one-celled fertilized ovum to
develop into a human being

Sex Cells

Gametes: sex cells (sperm, ...view middle of the document...

e., new birth) and outside the family

Socioeconomic Status & Family Functioning

SES: Combination of years of education; prestige/skills
require for job (social status); income
Differences in values, expectations, discipline styles
Affects timing, durations of phases of family life (i.e.,
marriage age)

Environmental Context (cont)


Often have problems engaging in family interactions
Risks include (vs. lower SES youth):

Poor grades/academic achievement
Alcohol/drug use
Higher levels of anxiety, depression
Unavailable parents (overscheduled; demanding)


Also threatens development
13% of Americans affected
Hardest hit are parents under age 25 with young
children, elderly who live alone
Also affects ethnic minority groups, women, children

Neighborhoods, Towns, Cities
Broader exo- and meso-systems have
important impact on development
 Allow social interactions, collaboration,
and mutual support/assistance

Cultural Context

Extended families: 3 or more generations live
Collectivist vs. Individualistic societies


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