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Links:      •  Self Test
                •  Print Ready Version
                 •  Chapter Index

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decorative star graphic  Adolescence:
Biosocial Development
- Sexual Characteristics -

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Reproductive Possibilities - Primary Characteristics

Ψ  Males
    •  Rapid growth of penis & scrotum at 12 or 13
     •  Comparisons can be embarrassing, but are meaningless in terms of function
      •  First ejaculation of semen around age 12 - spermarche
       •  Nocturnal emissions

Ψ  Females
    •  Menarche is preceded by enlargement of the breasts, appearance of pubic hair, & broadening of the hips & shoulders.
    •  Next, the uterus, vagina, labia, & clitoris develop to mature proportions

Sexual Appearance - Secondary Characteristics

•  Breast development. First “buds” develop, then the larger breast. Nipples increase in size and darkness. To a much lesser degree, this happens in some males.

•  Body hair. Pubic hair progresses from fuzz to darker hair; underarm hair begins.

•  Voice. Males’ larynxes enlarge, creating larger resonance chambers.

Human Growth & Development
Robert C. Gates
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