A01: The Nature-Nurture Debate

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  • A01: The Nature-Nurture Debate
    • Nature
      • Human characteristics are innate
      • The result of heredity
      • The idea of the biological approach
    • Nurture
      • The mind is a blank slate at birth
      • Behaviour is learned through interaction with the environment
      • The idea of the behaviourist approach
      • Learning can be from prenatal and postnatal environments
    • Interactionism
      • The focus on the debate is now on the relative influence of both nature and nurture
      • e.g. bond between infant and parent
        • Child's innate temperament influences how the parent behaves towards them
        • The parent's responses in turn affect the child's behaviour
    • Diathesis-Stress Model
      • Mental disorder is caused by a biological vulnerability, coupled with an environmental trigger
      • E.g. Sz
        • Candidate genes cause the vulenrability
        • The environmental trigger may be family dysfunction
    • Epigenics
      • A change in genetic activity without changing the genetic code
      • Lifestyle and events leave 'marks' on our DNA
      • These marks tell our bodies which genes to ignore and which to use
      • This can influence the genetic code of our children
    • Relative Importance
      • Environemntal influences on a human begin at conception
      • This means the nature-nurture debate is impossible to answer
      • e.g. in twin studies, concordance rates could be due to shared genetics or shared upbringing


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