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Key terms

crystallized intelligence

knowledge and skills gained through experience and education that tend to increase over the life span

dialectical thought

a form of thought involving recognition and acceptance of paradox and uncertainty.
Type of thinking that develops in emerging adulthood, involving a growing awareness that most problems do not have a single solution and that problems must often be addressed with crucial pieces of information missing.

fluid intelligence

Aspects of innate intelligence, including reasoning abilities, memory, and speed of information processing, that are relatively independent of education and tend to decline as people age, and does not depend on specific experiences.

intimate partner abuse

physical acts or other behavior intended to intimidate or harm an intimate partner

limbic system

the part of the brain that regulate emotional response.
, a doughnut-shaped system of neural structures at the border of the brainstem and cerebral hemispheres; associated with emotions such as fear and aggression and drives such as those for food and sex. Includes the hippocampus, amygdala, and hypothalamus.

locus of control

a set of beliefs about the causes of events.

maximum oxygen uptake (VO2 max)

a measure of the body's ability to take in and transport oxygen to various body organs

nontraditional post-secondary student

a student who either attends college part time or delays enrollment after high school graduation

pelvic inflammatory disease

usually caused by sexually transmitted infections of the female reproductive organs that cause inflammation and scarring of the fallopian tubes and can lead to infertility

personality disorder

an Inflexible pattern of behavior that leads to difficulty in social, educational, and occupational functioning.


an anxiety disorder marked by a persistent, irrational fear and avoidance of a specific object, activity, or situation

postformal thought

Piaget's 5th stage, belief that a solution to a problem depends upon many contextual factors.,
Thinking characterized by a recognition that truth varies across situations, that solutions must be realistic to be reasonable, that ambiguity and contradiction are the rule rather than the exception, and that emotion and subjective factors play a role in thinking.

post-secondary education

any education or training following high school

primary aging (senescence)

age-related physical changes that have a biological basis and are universally shared and inevitable

reflective judgment

the ability to identify the underlying assumptions of differing perspectives on controversial issues


the idea that some propositions cannot be adequately described as either true or false.


a serious mental disorders characterized by disturbances of thought such as delusions and hallucinations.

secondary aging

Age-related changes that are due to environment influences,poor health habits, or disease.

sexual violence

the use of physical coercion to force a person to engage in a sexual act against his or her will

substance abuse

a pattern in which people rely on a drug excessively and regularly, bringing damage to their relationships, functioning poorly at work, or putting themselves or others in danger

traditional post-secondary student

a student who attends college full time immediately after graduating from high school.

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