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Bio 27: Human Sexuality. August 29, 2012 Chapter 2–Sex Research: Methods and Problems Chapter 3—Female Sexual Anatomy and Physiology. Important announcement!. This class now has a Twitter: Bio27Laney Go there for: Links to download lecture slides

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Bio 27: Human Sexuality

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Bio 27 human sexuality

Bio 27: Human Sexuality

August 29, 2012

Chapter 2–Sex Research: Methods and Problems

Chapter 3—Female Sexual Anatomy and Physiology

Important announcement

Important announcement!

This class now has a Twitter:

Go there for:

  • Links to download lecture slides

  • Interesting retweets & links

The federal government should not spend money on sexology research

“The federal government should not spend money on sexology research”

How strongly do you agree or disagree with this statement? Explain your answer.

1 strongly disagree

1: Strongly Disagree

“I think that it would be good to learn how people should prevent diseases from spreading, and how to allow the education of sex. It would be a good knowledge to stop teen pregnancy and help understand safe and protected sex”

1 strongly disagree1

1. Strongly Disagree

“I strongly disagree because sexuality in the modern world is changing. We have science to help us understand other lifestyles, sexualities, and gender. As humans I feel we should understand all forces of human nature and different biologies, to change the status quo.”

2 somewhat disagree

2. Somewhat disagree

“I mostly disagree with this statement, because it is not very clear. Sexology should be studies however the money should not just be handed out to any sexology research. Now I would assume this, but since the question is vague I cannot completely disagree with it,for instance there should not be a research done on sexual arousal while using a yo-yo, there are limits.”

2 somewhat disagree1

2. Somewhat disagree

“I somewhat disagree because althoug some research on sexual behavior may seem irrelevant compared to other issues such as cancer cures but there are also some sexology research which are very helpful, e.g. condom use projects, as they could help reduce STD’s including HIV/AIDS which is a fatal illness.”

The experimental method procedures

The Experimental Method:Procedures

  • The Experimental Method is how most scientific research is conducted

  • Conditions are manipulated by scientists usually in a laboratory setting

  • Observations & previous knowledge lead to the development of a testable hypothesis

  • Hypothesis: a proposed answer to a scientific question

The experimental method procedures1

The Experimental Method:Procedures

  • Independent variable: condition or component that is manipulated

  • Dependent variable: what is being measured

  • Ideally want all experimental groups to be the same except for the independent variable!

The experimental method

The Experimental Method

  • Advantages:

    • Lowers the influence of other variables

    • Can establish cause-effect relationships

  • Disadvantages:

    • Being measured may affect actions

    • Artificiality of laboratory setting

Use of the experimental to study sexual behavior

Use of the experimental to study sexual behavior

  • Observation: men under the influence of alcohol often exhibit impaired sexual performance

  • Experiment: 48 male college students watched a sexually explicit film while wearing a penile strain gauge. They then repeated this action after drinking alcohol

  • Conclusion: Alcohol decreased sexual arousal, and the degree of reduction was related to the amount of alcohol consumed

Human studies ethical issues

Human studies: ethical issues

  • Prior to 1948, few restrictions on scientific studies in humans

  • Tuskegee experiment in U.S.

  • Following cruel experiments performed by the Nazis, increasing awareness that human subjects of scientific studies should be given certain rights in the 1950s-1960s

Ethical guidelines for human sex research

Ethical Guidelines for Human Sex Research

  • No pressure or coercion for participation

    • Controversy over paying subjects for participation

  • Informed consent and voluntary participation

  • Confidentiality and anonymity

  • Question of deception: don’t always want to tell subjects in advance what is being studied

  • Institutional ethics review

Use of animals in sexology research

Use of animals in sexology research

  • Most medical research in this country, including sexology research, is performed on laboratory animals

  • 95% of laboratory animals are rats and mice

  • Mice are about 85% genetically similar to humans, but some substantial differences, too!

  • Most mammalian females will only participate in sexual behavior when in estrus

Use of animals in sexology research1

Use of animals in sexology research

  • Ethical concerns about the use of animals

  • More invasive procedures are permitted, but must be approved

  • Extensive laws protect the rights of lab animals

  • Some more protected than others

Evaluating research questions to ask

Evaluating Research:Questions to Ask

  • Why was the research done? Who did the research? Who paid for the research? What are their credentials? What biases are there?

  • Who were the participants? How were they selected & assigned to groups?

  • How was the research conducted? What methods were used?

  • Where was the research reported? What additional support is there?

Chapter 3 female sexual anatomy and physiology

Chapter 3Female Sexual Anatomy and Physiology

The vulva

The Vulva

  • Vulva = External female genitalia; consist of:

  • Mons veneris

  • Labia majora

  • Labia minora

  • Clitoris

  • Vestibule

    • Urethral opening

    • Introitus & hymen

Vulvas are diverse

Vulvas are diverse

“Design a Vagina,” by Jamie McCartney

The clitoris

The Clitoris

  • Analogous to the male penis, but only function is sexual arousal

  • Clitoral stimulation most common way women achieve orgasm

  • Female genital cutting usually involves removal of some or all of the clitoris:

    • Religious/cultural reasons (“female circumcision”)

    • Medical reasons: intersex

Anatomy of the clitoris

Anatomy of the clitoris

  • Covered by a flap of tissue called the hood

  • Smegma: a combination of genital secretions, dead skin cells, and bacteria, can accumulate under the clitoral hood

  • Glans of the clitoris is generally visible; shaft is covered by the hood

The vulva1

The Vulva

  • Vestibule (inside the labia minora)

    • Urethral opening

    • Vaginal introitus (opening)

      • Hymen

  • Perineum

    • May be cut during episiotomy for childbirth

Underlying structures pelvic floor muscles

Underlying Structures: Pelvic floor muscles

  • Pelvic floor muscles

    • Often weakened/damaged by childbirth and with age

    • Can be strengthened by Kegelexercises

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