Nature/Nurture

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description (a question)

  • nature argument suggests that individuals are born with set abilities and characteristics, which can be influene by brain chemicals and genetics on behaviour either at birth or as an individual matures.
  • nurture argument suggests that individuals are a product of environmental factors and their interaction with the environment. therefore individuals abilities and characteristics are determined by their experiences.

perspective to support debate (b question)

nature

  • physiological approach takes a nature point of view - suggests that behaviour is due to genetic/biological (bio-chemical) factors. Eg Raine looked at the brain functioning of murderers claiming NGRI and compared this with the brain functioning of matched controls. this was done via PET scans. showed criminals had more activity in the left side of the amygdala and hippocampus and more activity in prefrontal area. shows that we are born with this dysfunction therefore we cannot change it.

nurture

  • behaviourist approach takes on a nurture point of view - suggests that all behaviour is learnt/shaped by experiences. Eg Watson and Raynor showed how a phobia can be created via classical conditioning. Little Albert had no reaction to rat/rabbit, had a fearful reaction to steel bar noise. 5 presentations of rat and noise, LA reacted to rat alone. shows how our behaviour is a product of our environment, our characteristics are determined by our experiences.

studies that support debate (b

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