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The biological approach suggests that gender is determined by chromosomes and hormones. It
suggests that these influence our gender development.

Males and females are determined by genetic sex. Males have XY chromosomes and females
have XXY chromosomes. During prenatal development, all individuals begin the same with female
genitialia, however…

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Evolutionary explanations of gender

1. Evoluntionary explanation in terms of DOL. Women ­ milk or pregnant unable to hunt.
2. Key to adaptive behaviour is reproductive success so mate choice is important factor in
evoluntionary process.
3. Men look for women ­ physically attractive ­ advertise fertility to ensure healthy…

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Other support came from Ennis et al who conducted a natural experiment to test male/female
differences in stress response a week before an exam and on the exam date. They did this by
testing cortisol in the blood. The findings showed that males stress hormones rose more where as

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Biosocial approach

1. Biosocial approach gender development comination of biology and environmental
2. Money ­ intersex individuals AID or mistyped as female, if treated as female before the age
of 3 then he will acquire the gender identity of a female ­ there fore gender development is
due too…

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cause physical differences between the two genders and it is the physical differences that cause
the psychological differences for example, because males are more athletic they are more suited to
being the hunter. However the social role theory suggests that selective pressures only cause
physical differences leading to sex role…

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Cognitive development theory

Kohlberg suggested that gender development is a cognitive developmental theory, and is through
three stages, labelling, stability and constancy. This is known as the constancy theory.

1. During the gender labelling phase, (23 yr olds) children label themselves and others as
male or female dependant on their…

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This is supported by Martin and Little, who found that children under the age of 4 showed no signs
of gender stability let alone signs of constancy, however, they had fix gender stereotypes,
supporting gender schema theory.

Martin and Halverson found that when children were asked to recall pictures of…

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Social influences on gender role

Social Learning Theory (Bandura and Walters) applied social learning theory to gender role
development in three modes of influence modelling, enactive representation, and direct tuition.

Modelling, isn't just imitating someone's behaviour, in terms of gender, children must be able to
divide people into male and…

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However, this study doesn't take into account any biological aspects, and the fact that genetic and
hormonal balances may affect the way in which we behave.

Cross cultural studies of gender roles

Cross culture studies look into all different cultures, such as collective cultures, industrialised and
individualistic cultures. They do…


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