AQA B Psychology gender development

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AQA B Psychology ­ Gender Development
Key concepts
Sex- physical differences
Chromosomes- XX-Female XY- Male
Gender- attitude and behaviour
The link between sex and gender is identified by society
For some people their gender is not always consistent with their sex
Androgynous- roughly equal amounts of masculine and feminine (this is not associated
with any particular sex)
STUDY- Bem- construct an identity to measure masculinity, femininity and androgyny.
50 males 50 females asked to judge traits on how desirable they were for a men and
women. BSRI was tested and found to be accurate to what people described
themselves as. BSRI was established as valid.
Sex VS Gender
Transsexuals- a person who desires to be a member of the opposite sex
Sex is fixed but their anatomy can be changed
There is a debate whether gender is fixed or not
STUDY- Imperato-mcginley et al ­individuals can change their gender role identity.
Males appeared as girls at birth but at puberty they developed testicles and penises.
After their transformation mostly all the boys easily adapted to their true sex. People
can change their gender role identity
Nature-nurture debate
Nature- Biological- gender identity is a direct results of genetic and hormonal
influences-STUDY- Buss- heterosexual mate preferences of men and women. Carried
out a survey in 37 countries where they rated the importance of a wide range of traits
in a potential mate. Men rated good looks, youth and chastity in a women and women
rated good financial prospects, industriousness and dependability in men. Men and
women instinctively seek out different traits in potential mates.
Nurture- Social learning theory- gender identity is socially constructed- STUDY- Mead-
similarities and differences across gender roles in different cultures. Lived in New
Guinea for 6 months. Mundugamor tribe both were masculine, arapesh tribe both
feminine and tchambuli tribe gender roles reversed. Gender behaviour is not universal
and depend on culture.
Sex-roles stereotypes
When we look at nurture we look at the process of socialisation- beliefs, norms and
values are transmitted by agents of socialisation.
There are expectations of males and females behaviour. The two sexes are treated
differently and this is the root of sex role stereotyping.
Males and females are expected to act according to their sex
Adult sex-role stereotypes- STUDY- William and best- over 30 countries they asked
university students to indicated whether an adjective(300) is associated with men,
women or both equally. Agreement across all most countries. More differentiated in
protestant compared to catholic countries.5 year olds showed at least the beginning of
adult stereotyping.

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Children's sex role stereotypes-STUDY- Urbery- content of gender stereotypes in
children aged between 3 and 7 years old. The children were told a story, showed two
pictures one of a man and one of a female and them asked who was most likely to go
with the story, some images were adult some were children. 5 year olds were more
rigid, 7 year olds were more flexible and more stereotyped when pictures of children.
Young children have a clear expectation of male and female behaviours.…read more

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Sex hormones
do affect gender related behaviours.
Advantages Disadvantages
Supports the nature side Doesn't fully recognise the complexity of
animals or humans
Supported by scientific research Ignores nurture
We have some choice in gender and how
we behave
Animals research
SLT explains how we need role models
Cognitive explains the thinking processes related to gender
Psychodynamic explains the importance of the unconscious
Biological ignore all of these
Social learning theory
Gender is essentially learnt from others.…read more

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Most of our mind is unconscious so we only have access to a small part of our mind.…read more

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Gender constancy 4-7 They understand
everyone's sex is
STUDY: Marcus and Overton- as children get older they understand more about
people's sexes. Groups- 5-6, 6-7, 7-8 years old. Showed a puzzle book with either a
female or male or themselves and changes the clothes and hair and asked them if
there sex has change. The younger children saw their own sex and stable but though
others could change and the older children knew both can't change sex.…read more


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