In us canada europe o premarital sex and cohabitation

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in US, Canada, Europe o Premarital sex and cohabitation is rare and forbidden throughout Asia – dating discourages until late 20s Median age for marriage and parenthood have been rising in recent decades in developing & OECD countries o Only a minority of young people in developing countries experience emerging adulthood o Emerging adulthood exists only for wealthier segment of society in developing countries Proportion of young people who experience emerging adulthood will increase as middle class expands o Likely to be normative worldwide by end of 21 st century
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To enhance likelihood that emerging adults w/ successfully transition to adulthood, societies should expand opportunities for obtaining tertiary education Mysterious Workings of the Adolescent Brain Widely believed 15 years ago that majority of brain development occurs in the first few years of life o Due to advances in brain imaging technology, we can look inside a living brain and track changes o Structural MRI lets you take a snapshot of inside of the brain w/ really high resolution o Functional MRI lets you record brain activity when people are doing some kind of task Brain continues to develop through adolescence into adulthood o Adolescence – period of life that starts w/ biological, hormonal, physical changes of puberty & ends at age when individual attains stable and independent role in society One of the brain regions that change the most during adolescence is prefrontal cortex o Prefrontal cortex – bigger in humans than any other species, involved in high-level cognitive functions Associated with decision making, planning, inhibiting inappropriate behavior, social interaction Involved in understanding other people and self-awareness MRI studies have shown that there is lots of development in brain during adolescence o Gray matter volume increases across childhood & peaks in early adolescence around puberty Peak occurs a few years later in boys than girls – boys go through puberty later than girls Significant decline in gray matter volume in prefrontal cortex in adolescence o Gray matter contains cell bodies and connections btwn synapses of cells Decline in gray matter volume during prefrontal cortex corresponds to synaptic pruning Synaptic pruning – elimination of unwanted synapses Synaptic pruning partly depends on environment that animal or human is in Synapses being used are strengthened & synapses not used are pruned away Fine tunes brain tissue according to species-specific environment fMRI studies have shown changes in brain activity across age o Social brain – network of brain regions that we use to understand other people and interact w/ them (1) Social responses are very automatic and instinctive (2) We are good at reading other people’s behavior and facial expressions Medial prefrontal cortex – middle of prefrontal cortex
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o Region is more active in adolescents when they make social decisions than in
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