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Chapter 3 Psychology Vocab


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A complex molecule containing the genetic information that makes up the chromosomes. Has 2 strands, forming a double helix held together by bonds between pairs of nucleotides.
The biochemical units of heredity that make up the chromosomes; a segment of DNA capable of synthesizing a protein.
Natural Selection
The principle that among the range of inherited trait variations, those that lead to increased reproduction and survival will most likely be passed on to succeeding generations.
In psychology, the characteristics whether biologically or socially influenced, by which people define male and female.
Behavior Genetics
The study of relative power and limits of genetic and environmental influences on behavior.
Every non genetic influence from prenatal nutrition to the people and things around us.
Identical Twins
Twins who develop from a single fertilized egg that splits in two, creating two genetically identical organisms.
Fraternal Twins
Twins who develop from seperate eggs. They are genetically no closer than brother and sister but they share a fetal environment.
A person's characteristic emotional reactivity and intensity.
The proportion of variation among individuals that we can attribute to genes. The heritability of a trait may vary, depending on the range of populations and environment studied.
The dependence of the effect of one factor (such as environment) on another factor (such as heredity).
Molecular Genetics
The subfield of biology that studies the molecular structure and function of genes.
An understood rule for accepted and expected behavior. They prescribe "proper" behavior.
Personal Space
The buffer zone we like to maintain around our bodies
Self-replicating ideas, fashions, and innovations passed form person to person.
X Chromosome
The sex chromosome found in both men and women. Females have two, and males have one. An x chromosome from each parent produces a female child.
Y Chromosome
The sex chromosome found only in males. When paired with an x chromosome from the mother, it produces a male.
The most important of the male sex hormones. Males and females have it but the additional testosterone in males stimulates the growth of the male sex organs in the fetus and the development of the male sex characteristics during puberty.
A set of expectations about a social position, defining how those in the position ought to behave.
Gender role
A set of expected behaviors for males and females.
Gender Identity
One's sense of being male or female.
Gender Typing
The acquisition of a traditional masculine or feminine role.
Social-learning Theory
The theory that we learn social behavior by observing and imitating and by being rewarded or punished.
Gender Schema Theory
The theory that children learn from their cultures a concept of what it means to be male or female and that they adjust their behavior accordingly.
Giving priority to one's own goals over group goals and defining one's identity in terms of personal attributes rather than group identifications.
Giving priority to the goals of one's group (often one's extended family or work group) and defining one's identity.

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