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July13_09 - Nature vs Nurture Nature the extent to which we...

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1 1 Psych 1 Principles of Psychology Dr. Emiliana Simon-Thomas 07/13/09 2 Nature vs. Nurture “It’s not nature versus nurture, it’s nurturing nature” “Nature and Nurture… are simply two different ways of making deposits into the brain’s synaptic ledgers” “Genes and experiences are just two ways of doing the same thing – wiring synapses” Nature – the extent to which we are shaped by heredity Nurture – our life history “Nurture works on what nature endows” “Genes and experience together wire the brain” 3 Nature: Genes Chromosomescontaining DNA( deoxyribonucleic acid ) are situated in the nucleus of a cell. 4 Genes: Our Codes for Life Segments within DNA consist of genesthat make proteins to determine our development. 5 Genome The Genomeis the set of complete instructions for making an organism, containing all the genes in that organism. Thus, the human genome makes us human, and the genome for drosophila makes it a common house fly. Heritabilityis the extent to which variation among individuals can be attributed to their differing genes, e.g. breast cancer & Alzheimer’s disease have been shown to be partly heritable. 6 Behavior Genetics: Twin and Adoption Studies Studying the effects of heredity and environment on two sets of twins, identical and fraternal.
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2 7 Separated Twins A number of studies compared identical twins reared separately from birth, or close thereafter, and found numerous similarities. Interests, Fears Brain Waves, Heart Rate Abilities, Attitudes Personality, Intelligence Separated Twins 8 Separated Twins Critics of separated twin studies note that such similarities can be found between strangers. Researchers point out that differences between fraternal twins are greater than identical twins. Bob Sacha 9 Biological Versus Adoptive Relatives Adoption studies, as opposed to twin studies, suggest that adoptees (who may be biologically unrelated) tend to be different from their adoptive parents and siblings. 10 Adoptive Studies Adoptive studies strongly point to the simple fact that biologically related children turn out to be different in a family. So investigators ask: Do siblings have differing experiences? Do siblings, despite sharing half of their genes, have different combinations of the other half of their genes? Ultimate question: Does parenting have an effect? 11 Parenting Parenting does have an effect on biologically related and unrelated children. Faith, Politics Manners, Beliefs Attitudes, Values Parenting Influences Children’s 12 Temperament and Heredity Temperament refers to a person’s stable emotional reactivity and intensity.
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