Proximate Determinants

By , November 24, 2011 10:37 pm


In the analysis of why the x and y factors might be related, pay special attention to proximate determinants. From there, determine whether factors are biological or behavioural, or both.

Proximate Determinants:

  • age of menarche
  • breastfeeding
  • infertility
  • age of marriage
  • age of first child
  • childbearing period
  • spacing of children
  • contraceptive usage
  • education
  • family size
  • career
  • social norms pertaining to almost all of the above
  • developed and developing countries (your 36 countries include both)


Biological and Behavioural Overlap:

Some factors can be both biological and behavioural. The textbook uses the example of menarche. You’d think it was just simply a biological factor. But in reality cultural practices (which include behaviours, of course) come into play as well; the differing ages of menarche in the developing and developed worlds relate to diet and exercise, factors that would be cultural, thus behavioural.

So many other factors can also be seen in this overlapping way. Breastfeeding does not just provide biological nutrients to babies. It is also a behaviour highly influenced by the culture around it. In any society, there are social norms, laws, government policies and other factors that either support breastfeeding or block it by putting up barriers.



Make sure the graphs are totally neat and clear (everything that is supposed to be labelled is clearly labelled, including units of measurement). Follow the example we did together on “Data Collection Exercise.”


In only a few sentences identify the type of correlation.

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