Effects of Nature Versus Nurture on Human Behaviour
July 2, 2015
Nature versus nurture is the debate over what causes the development of an individual’s
specific psychological and behavioral characteristics. On one side is nature, which lends our
development to genetics and believes our behaviour and psychology is formed before birth.
Typically, the earlier certain traits appear the more likely they are to be determined by genetics
(1). On the other side is nurture. The nurture stance believes we are born as a blank slate and our
specific psychological and behavioural characteristics are determined by our environment.
Nature versus nurture has been hotly debated for many years. It was a traditionally held
belief that behaviour was a learned response to social interaction. This was supported by feral
children who, lacking human interaction and socialization from a young age, never developed
language or social skills. In recent years there have been several studies conducted on twins to
determine the extent genetics affect our psychological and behavioural characteristics, and has
found genetics do play a large role.
Bobo Doll Experiment
The Bobo doll experiment was an experiment conducted on 36 girls and 36 boys in order
to test Bandurra’s Social Learning Theory. A theory which says children learn social behaviours
based on observation of others (2). Researchers first tested the children for aggression by
observing their normal play and ranked their level of aggression. The children were then divided
into 3 groups of 12 girls and 12 boys per group. In each group the children were taken
individually to a room to play with toys. They then observed the interaction of another person
with a doll named Bobo. One group observed aggressive behaviour towards Bobo, another
observed non aggressive behaviour towards Bobo, and the last group observed no interaction ...