The nature-nurture debate is all about whether genetics (nature) or our environment (nurture) is responsible for our behaviour and development. Early theorists believed that our personality, intellect, behaviour and gender role were determined by our genes and therefore could not be changed. But an increasing amount of evidence has proved these theorists wrong, and our development as an individual is learnt through the environment we live in. One developmental stage of an individual that psychologists have the nature-nurture debate about is the intelligence stage. The nature side of that intelligence is present at birth and we already have a set amount of intelligence.
Charles Darwin and Sigmund Freud both challenged Enlightenment assumptions about human behavior and the role of reason. The Enlightenment thought humans were superior to animals and should think reasonably. Darwin believed humans evolved over time into what the species is today. It was this concept of evolution that Darwin understood which Enlightenment did not have. Sigmund Freud's id, ego, and super ego theory brought about a new way of thought that challenged the Enlightenment.
It was referred to as phrenology, and is primarily concerned with the localization of brain function. Franz Josef Gall was a phrenologist who could prove his theory of contra lateral function which believed that the right side of the brain controlled the left side of the body and vice versa. New innovative advancements during the 19th century allowed for new clinical studies to be performed that allowed scientists and psychologists to study individuals with mental illnesses and brain damage. If we wouldn’t had the advancements in the 19th century scientists and psychologists would have continued to struggle to prove theories on the basis of ideas rather than scientific evidence. Conclusion The history of todays psychology has been influenced by many important people throughout time.
There is much debate over whether psychology is considered to be a science or not. So what is science? Science is generally defined as the knowledge gained through observations of the world via scientific methods, rather than what we believe to be true of the world (American Psychological Association, 2007). Psychology is widely recognised as the study of mental processes and behaviour (Wickens 2000). From this outline psychology could clearly be defined as a science as it involves gaining a deeper understanding of humans within the world.
Personality psychologists claimed that one of the most profound challenges is to account for personality development, that’s why they put this into a study whether an individual’s behavior are caused by heredity or the environment, this study is known as the “nature” and “nurture”. First, the nature suggests that human behavior is driven mostly by biology (evolution, genetics, brain chemistry, and hormones). In contrast, the nurture suggests that behavior is driven mostly by psychosocial environment (for example, how we were raised, our peers, the situations we are in at present). Both nature and nurture contribute to who an individual is, but to better comprehend the nature versus nurture debate, we should look at the essential characteristics that make up this controversy. Humans are unique and highly-intricate creatures.
Nature Vs. Nurture Daniel Franks Western Governors University Issues in Behavioral Science GTL 1 October 27, 2014 Nature Vs. Nurture The term, nature vs. nurture, was coined by Sir Francis Galton after two published studies, Hereditary Genius (1869), and English Men of Science: Their Nature and Nurture (1874) explored whether certain traits were inherited from birth or if they could be learned and fostered by environment and upbringing. Since then this debate has been put to everything from intelligence to sexual orientation, with a few scholars taking a firm stance on one side of the argument or another, but most believing that both take an equally important role in determining a persons personality. In this paper we will briefly breakdown both sides of the debate,
Can intelligence change? To what extent is intelligence malleable? Extended Essay: Psychology Name: Candidate number: School: Nörre Gymnasium Word count: 37811 Abstract This essay investigated the research question: To what extent is intelligence malleable? It was necessary to start by presenting the debate on defining intelligence since there is not a complete consensus among psychologists, however, this paper accepted a definition which is generally accepted by respected psychologists; that ‘intelligence is the ability to deal with cognitive complexity’ (Gottfredson, 1998). In presenting and analysing empirical evidence such as Howe (1997) supporting the thesis that intelligence can, in fact, change under the right conditions and given enough time, a strong indication of malleability is provided.
I think Nature vs. Nurture is an argument between those who believe that human behavior and individual’s development processes are caused by inherited genes (nature) or the environmental influences (nurture). The nature side of the debate argues that our behavior and development are genetically inherited and therefore it cannot be altered, whereas the nurture side of the debate argues that the environment in which we grow and socialize shape our human characteristics. Either way, there is no clear conclusion to this debate; however, in my opinion both nature and nurture are very important in the individual’s developmental processes. This essay will compare the role of genetic influences (nature) versus environmental influences (nurture) in the individual’s developmental process. The studies that have been done on twins played an important role to the nature versus nurture debate.
Heredity and Hormones Influence on Human Behavior Debates on nature versus nurture are more likely to determine that genetics are the cause for human behavior. More and more researchers pay attention on genes and behavior, therefore, their tendency to follow a line of investigation on the influence of heredity on human behavior increases the belief that genetics is a major issue which influences physical behaviors. However, the only fact of connection between genetics and behavior seems to be too simple to describe the complex process of human behavior. The factor of hormones’ influence on behavior is also identified which debates the reality of it being controlled exclusively by genetics. The endocrine system is very active and is connected to most of the other main systems of the body.
Nature vs. Nurture Scientists believe that traits such as hair and eye colour are determined by specific genes encoded in each human cell. They now also believe abstract traits such as intelligence, personality, aggression and sexual orientation are also encoded in an individual’s DNA. This is known as the Nature theory, whereby it is the genetics and the characteristics that have been inherited from generations earlier that make the person behave the way they are. The Nurture theory however has a different approach to human behaviour, and although it does not completely discount genetic tendencies, the scientists studying this theory ultimately believe that genetics do not matter. They argue that our behavioural aspects originate only from the environmental factors of our upbringing.