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n. in ecological systems theory, changes and continuities occurring over time that influence an individual’s development. These influences include normative life transitions (e.g., school entry, marriage, retirement), nonnormative life transitions (e.g., divorce, winning the lottery, relocation), and the cumulative effects of the entire sequence of transitions over the life course. Compare exosystem; mesosystem; macrosystem. [introduced by Urie Bronfenbrenner]

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Psychology term of the day

April 17th 2024

axial gradient

axial gradient

the difference in development or metabolic rate of tissues along a body axis. See also anterior–posterior development gradient.