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PSYCHOLOGY: HOW NATURE AND NUTURE AFFECTS HUMAN BEHAVIOR


Before discussing the issue of how nature and nurture can affect human behavior the core concepts must be fully explained, it is important to understand what nature and nurture actually are.

DEFINITION OF CONCEPTS.
 Nature;
Nature can be loosely defined as genetic inheritance or the genetic makeup (the information encoded in your genes) which a person inherits from both parents at the time of conception and carries throughout life.

Several things in an individual are genetically inherited, ranging from gender, eye color, risks for certain diseases and exceptional talents to height. The concept of nature thus refers to biologically inherited tendencies and abilities that people have and which may get revealed later on as they grow up.

 Nurture;
Nurture can be defined as the different environmental factors to which a person is subjected from birth to death.
Environmental factors involve many dimensions. They include both physical environments (a good example is prenatal nutrition) and social environments (such as the neighborhood, media and peer pressure.) Also, environmental factors have different levels of impact on human development as they involve multiple layers of action, ranging from most immediate (families, friends, and neighborhoods) to bigger societal contexts (school systems and local governments) as well as macro factors such as politics on the international level or say global warming. These layers are also impacted by other factors outside them. For example, teenagers are exposed to not just peer pressure from their peers but also to parental ideals, community standards or ethnic views.
The question of how nature versus nurture influences human development has been an ongoing debate for a very long time and at present there is no clear winner, as both nature (genes) and nurture (environmental factors) seem to play a vital and important role in human development.
Nature is responsible for the growth of a person from the fetus level until development into a normal adult. The genetic makeup of a human being is responsible for their sex, skin color, color of their eyes and hair as well as distinguishing features which are inherited.
Nature can only assist in the growth of a fetus into a normal well-developed adult who may have inherited some special talents. Thus it can be concluded that nature uses the genetic coding to help in physical development and does impart some positive or negative traits to an individual. However, it is nurture which can be utilized to improve positive traits and diminish the effect of negative traits in a child.
It is indeed important to recognize that nature in the form of inherited traits does exist but a person’s overall behavior is influenced a great deal by nurture or upbringing and the environmental factors involved in this upbringing. Several recent studies carried out on infant and child behavior have shown that there is significant evidence to support the fact that nurture strongly influences human development especially in the early years.
In traditional society most parents encourage their kids to take part in extracurricular activities like learning music, dance or sports in accordance with the child’s talents and interests. The talents have been given by nature but they can only be developed into skills through the hard work of nurture.
Now let's discuss the influence and the impact of nature and nurture in human development.
The use of genetically informative designs to analyze human behavior has demonstrated and unravels importance of, inter-individual differences in trait scores that come as a result of inherited attributes (i.e., genetics) and environmental influences. Similarly, evidence shows that the recent studies on genetically informative longitudinal designs has unraveled the genetic and environmental factors that measured occasions, these include the process that estimate and explain the intensity of the stability of each element (i.e., hereditary and environmental continuity). Besides, recent reviewed literature shows that despite the assumptions of genetic continuity, research shows that it is not ideal and faultless (i.e., reliability coefficients are constantly minus 1) from childhood to adolescence stage (De Fruyt et al., 2006; Gillespie, Evans, Wright, & Martin, 2004; Spengler, Gottschling, &Spinath, 2012).
On the other hand, most reviewed studies also show that during childhood and adolescence periods, fresh hereditary factors appeared and add to inter-individual variation and sequential changes that exist in behavior. Moreover, reviewed past and recent evidences on genetic influence shows that similar to rank-order stability, genetic stability is enhanced from teenage years to middle age (Hopwood et al., 2011; Viken, Rose, Kaprio, &Koskenvuo, 1994) pending middle and late adulthood when it becomes stabilized and perfect (W. Johnson, McGue, & Krueger, 2005; Pedersen, 1993; Read, Vogler, Pedersen, & Johansson, 2006).
The results from environment studies on behavior do without question, offers evidence that highlighted that the secured inherited gap that happened in a person's when he or she become 40yrs, is not related to the putrefaction of stability coefficients reported in older age. However, whether this assumption is convincing enough or merely suggestive is debatable among researchers.
Nevertheless, result from the reviewed studies shows how those non genetic factors may add to rank-order continuity. Similarly, in other findings from a broad range of genetically informative studies, Johnson, Vernon, and Feiler, (2008) reported that the main non genetic basis of person's dissimilarity in neuroticism and extraversion is unambiguous (i.e., not distributed through relatives nurtured as one) and this according to their findings are referred to as non shared environmental effects. Nevertheless, evidence shows that from a behavioral genetics perception, "environmental" include physiologically and biochemically intervened consequences, such as situational or ecologically triggered epigenetic influences. This report illustrates that of shared environmental factors demonstrate the disparity in permanence (i.e., environmental continuity) in term of age analyzed. However, in a similar study conducted by Gillespie et al., (2004) they reported that children who are twins and age between 12yrs and 16yrs, showed significant low coefficients in ecological continuity for extraversion (i.e. . 17 and .18 was reported for males and females respectively) and neuroticism (. 12 and .36 for male and females) respectively.
In addition, Hopwood et al, (2011) conducted a study on developmental changes commencing teenage years on the way to adulthood (i.e. 17- 24yrs) and reported natural-continuity coefficients of .36 for negative emotionality (neuroticism), .37 in support of common positive expressivity, and .39 for inherited positive emotionality in behavior, while (the last two qualities represent parts of extraversion). Moreover, their study also investigate the continuity sequence between the ages of 24 and 29, and for this interval, they reported higher ecological continuity, with coefficients varied from .56 to .60. However, in another related study, Johnson et.al, (2005) detailed 5-year environmental-stability coefficients over .70 for middle adulthood. In addition, findings from other studies show high decrease in environmental continuity in old age (Pedersen & Reynolds, 1998; Read et al., 2006).
Also these are the results of the influence of nature and nurture in human behavior:

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