Thursday, January 23, 2020

Nature and Nuture Essays -- Psychology Behavior

The question is this: How can we distinguish between the environmental causes of behavior and heredity causes? This question embodies the nature-nurture issue. John B. Watson argued that each is made, not born. He discounted the importance of heredity, maintaining that behavior is managed entirely by the environment. Indeed he boldly claimed: " Give me a dozen healthy infants, well-formed, and my own special world to bring them up in and I'll guarantee to take any one at random and train him to become any type of specialist I might select-doctor, lawyer, artist, merchant-chief, and yes, even beggar-man and thief, regardless of his talents, penchants, tendencies, abilities, vocations and race of his ancestors. I am going beyond my facts and I admit it, but so have the advocates of the contrary and they have been doing it for many thousands of years." (Weiten 82) Although the question was first posed as a nature-versus-nurture issue, developmental psychologists today agree that both nature and nurture interact to produce specific developmental patterns and outcomes. Consequently, the question has evolved into how and to what degree do environment and heredity both produce their effects? No one grows up free of environment influences, nor does anyone develop without being affected by his or her inherited genetic makeup. However, the debate over the comparative influence of the two factors remains active, with different approaches and theories of development emphasizing the environment or heredity to a greater or lesser degree. "Some developmental theories rely on basic psychological principles of learning and stress the role learning plays in producing changes in behavior in a developing child."(Weiten 350) These theories... ...ferent environments, the may consider people raised in similar environment who have totally dissimilar genetic backgrounds. If they find, for example, similar courses of development in two adopted children who have different genetic backgrounds and have been raised in the same family, they have evidence for the importance of sentimental influences on development. Moreover, psychologists can carry out research involving animals with dissimilar backgrounds. By experimentally varying the environment in which they are raised, we can determine the influence of environmental factors on development. Dodge, Kenneth A. "The Nature Nurture Debate. "2004: p418-427. Gloucester County College Library. 2006 Papalia, Diane E. A Child's World: Infancy through Adolescence. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2006 Weiten, Wayne. Psychology Themes and Variations. Belmont: Wadsworth, 2002

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