Genetics Vs Environment

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One frequent debate in the realm of psychology is whether genetics or environment have a larger influence on a person’s personality and behavior. There is significant evidence for both theories, and both do play a role. However, personality and behavior is more strongly tied to the environment a person grows up in. Supported with scientific evidence, this paper will shed light the environmental aspect of behavior and personality development. Numerous studies have been done linking children’s observation of their environment and their resulting behavior. For example, the Bobo doll experiment displayed children’s behavior after witnessing an adult treat a doll with both gentleness and aggression. After an adult displayed either an aggressive …show more content…
More times than not, these studies supporting genetics and personality/behavior on performed on twins as a measure of hereditability (Kandler et al., 2016). In the case of identical twins, the subjects are formed from one egg and the same sperm cell. One study with the two identical twins named “Jim” show the effects genetics has on personality development. These twins were separated shortly after birth, had similar interests, been married twice to women bearing the same name, suffered from chronic headaches, and lived only a short distance away from each other. While these results are astounding in this study, they are highlighted by two siblings with the exact same genetic makeup growing up in different, but similar environments. These twins are the minority of the population, an extremely small sample that could even be called outliers. For example, if one of these twins had been taken overseas or even a different region of the United States, cultural differences/environment would have most definitely shaped personality and behavior. Genetics obviously play a role in personality, however, besides the sibling affect, genetics in social development are a bit overrated. Simple science proves that with every generation, genes become diluted. This is true with genes coding for appearance, i.e. blonde hair and blue eyes, and those coding for personality traits. A common phrase used to describe a child’s behavior is, “he is just like his father” or “she is going to grow up to be like her mother” and while genetics do play a factor in behavior, many forget an important aspect of development, the parents. Of course, many children will grow up to be like their parents because they were environmentally exposed to them for an extended period. This goes back to the social learning theory explaining how children learn