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Biological Explanations
· Aggression the intention to inflict some form of harm upon others
· Hormones: testosterone may be associated with aggression
· Genetics: some people may inherit genes that make them naturally more
aggressive than others . In some men- XYY instead of XY chromosome which
creates more testosterone and so increases aggression
· Brain Injury: injuries to the brain may cause an increase in aggression because
the limbic system is damaged. Prefrontal cortex is the part of the brain that
controls aggression. If damaged or underdeveloped, the person may become
more aggressive
Example: Charles Whitman- had a tumour pressing on his limbic system-
committed a mass murder…read more

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Hormones
Key Study- Young
· Aim: To see the effect of hormones on aggressive behaviour in
monkeys
· Method: Injected pregnant monkeys with testosterone and
observed the aggression levels of their offspring
· Results: Female monkeys grew up to behave like male monkeys-
challenged for dominance in the group etc.
· Conclusion: Testosterone plays a vital part in aggressive behaviour…read more

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Evaluation
· Longitudinal study- results may be skewed because of some monkeys
dying, becoming ill or being moved
· It cannot be generalised to humans because their behaviour may be
modified by the way they think- we are not the same
· Other factors could have affected the results such as how the
monkeys were treated…read more

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Brain Injury
Key Study- Raine
· Aim: To investigate murderer's brains using a PET scan
· Method: 41 murderers brains were scanned and compared with a
matched group of non-murderers
· Results: Murderers had lower activity in their prefrontal cortex than
non-murderers
· Conclusion: When the prefrontal cortex is not working properly, it
can lead to people committing violent crime…read more

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Evaluation of Biological Explanations of
Aggression
· There is evidence that there is a correlation between testosterone
levels and aggression- this does not show cause and effect, so other
factors may cause aggression
· Animal studies and case studies cannot be generalised to other
people
· Aggression could run in families due to learning and social influence
rather than genes…read more

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