Is Brains Inherited?
There are many different arguments associated with whether cleverness is inherited or whether it is something that is developed through the environment, which is otherwise known as the 'Characteristics versus Nurture' issue. A little of this will be reviewed down the road, along with seeking to define intellect, heritability and how inheritance occurs. In additional to this; various studies will be talked about with regards to research into whether brains is in fact inherited, and what impact the environment can have on someone's intellect.
To have the ability to define intellect, there are so many different approaches that have to be regarded such as numerical or reasoning; linguistic or verbal; kinaesthetic or motion; rhythmic or musical; spatial or aesthetic; inter and intrapersonal. Which is why Sternberg and Grigorenko (1997) comment that there is no definitive information to what cleverness is. Whereas Piaget (1950) stated that "intelligence constitutes the express of equilibrium towards which tend all the successive adaptations of an sensori-motor and cognitive characteristics, as well as all assimilatory and accommodatory relationships between your organism and the environment" (pg 11).
Intelligence is indeed affected by the environment as mentioned by Piaget, but heritability also offers an impact on brains and the surroundings also has an impact on heritability. Sternberg, Grigorenko and Kidd (2005) have advised that heritability does not illustrate what percentage of the feature is related to heritability, whereas is will demonstrate that the characteristic is due to genetic deviation within the population. Furthermore each goes to say that because trait variation is also called phenotypic variation and genetic variant is also known as genotypic variance and because of this they conclude by defining heritability as "a percentage of deviation in the phenotype being considered credited to relevant hereditary variant to phenotype variant" (p53).
Many people will think of inheritance and automatically think that it is something that is bestowed to someone in a will, which it is but in this case it is the transmitting of genes from a mom and dad to their son or daughter. Which means that the child is given half of the mother's genes and half of the father's genes.
The genes that are inherited from a person's parents are known as the phenotype, these usually include characteristics that happen to be transmitted from one generation to some other, which include physical characteristics such as ear shape, eye colour, and nostril size and physically elegance, other characteristics can be intelligence and behaviour but these characteristics can be affected by environmental factors, whereas the prior ones can't be.
There have been quite a number of research studies directly into intelligence and whether it is inherited or not. One of the first to do this was Sir Francis Galton, who was simply the first psychologist to see a relationship between character and nurture, where he thought that brains was something that was actually exceeded from technology to era but he also thought that there was another influencing factor; particularly the surroundings. (Maltby, Day and Macaskill, 2007)
Due to this discovery the study of equivalent twins started to help develop research directly into heritability. These studies were conducted around indistinguishable twins that were brought up mutually in distributed environment and similar twins which were brought up aside in a non distributed environment.
A distributed environment is where in fact the twins are living together with their biological parents, show up at the same university, and also have the same friends, where in contrast a non shared environment is where in fact the twins have been separated, with one twin live away with adoptive parents, possibly in an alternative area of the country, attend different school plus they would defiantly have different friends. By performing the research in this way it is easy to see if there is any correlation between your sets of twins.
One of the very most famous studies which were carried out on twins and triplet which were reared aside was the work done by Dr Thomas Bouchard Jr in 1979. This is a longitudinal review that went on for a period of approximately 10 years. This review was appeared in the identical and non indistinguishable twins and triplets and likened their IQ results, to see if genetics or the surroundings is the reason why behind the dissimilarities. The study was carried out twins and triplets because there discuss their DNA (Deoxyribonucleic Acid).
The results which were obtained from this research was that 70% of the difference in the IQ scores was a result of inheritance, unlike past studies that have show that only 50% of the difference is because of inheritance (Bouchard Jr, 1990). Prior studies such as these where completed by Plomin (1998) where here studies several hundred pair of Swedish twins who were reared apart found that 50 percent of the variance in the test scored was down to heredity, which was constant with other studies.
The study completed Bouchard was only carried out with a tiny sample size of around 100 twins and triplets. If the study was to be completed with a sizable test size and included other relatives of the twins and triplets then maybe the result of the variance may lower, and therefore exhibiting that the result of genetics and the surroundings is a 50/50 split.
There needs to be substantially more research in to the area of intelligence and influencing factors, including the effects of child poverty and interpersonal exclusion, maternal factors such as alcoholic beverages, smoking and drugs use, biological factors such as competition, get older and gender, and geological factors. Sternberg (1997) has explained that hereditability estimates vary depending on type of test used when the analysis is being carried out, as well as the population, country and ethnic group.
To conclude intellect is in fact inherited, however the other factors that contain to also be included will be the environmental factors. For example if a child is born intelligent, if the influencing and nurturing family environment is not available the child will not know how to channel the intelligence they have. For instance Bradley, et al (1989) mentioned that "Measures of specific aspects of the child's home environment, such as parental responsibility and availability of revitalizing play materials, were more strongly related to child development".
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