Nature Vs Nurture And Its Impact On Child Development

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An ongoing debate in today’s society is between nature vs nurture. Nature is the belief that heredity traits and genetics are the main sources of a person’s development. On the other side of the argument is nature meaning you believe the environment and experiences determine decisions. Humans are primarily formed off of environmental and social factors. An individual’s experience and how they are raised strictly shape them into who they are.

Intelligence is a topic that is always discussed among individuals, but it is based strictly on family and education. A child’s school attendance, for example, reflects how they will do in school. If a child has been raised knowing that attendance is not important, they will not care to show up to class. Another example of family affecting intelligence is how siblings have different IQ scores. According to an article published on Verywell Mind, “Many experts believe that this is because first-born children receive more attention from parents. Research also suggests that parents expect older children to perform better on a variety of tasks, whereas later-born siblings face lesser task-focused expectations” (Cherry). This shows that how the child is nurtured plays an important role in IQ scores or intelligence. The attention received is an important factor considering children look up to and for acceptance from parents. The educational environment also needs to be considered when discussing intelligence. According to another article by Simply Psychology, “More fundamentally, they believe that differences in intellectual ability are a product of social inequalities in access to material resources and opportunities” (McLeod). This means that a person given fewer opportunities isn’t going to succeed as much as someone who is said to be “privileged”.

Secondly, the environmental conditions which a child grows up to contribute to their development. The article ‘Nurture the Nature’ gives a great analogy of how conditions alter development. The article states, “Providing care according to the requirements of a given plant will help in its growth. Similarly, every child has the potential to grow up to be a responsible adult provided the environment is conducive for his or her development. Therefore, catering to a given child’s needs will facilitate the blooming process”(Sravanti). When looking at children like trees they need to be raised in good living conditions to flourish. A child needs to be given the tools to live to develop a positive character. Referencing from an article by Verywell Mind, “Identical twins reared apart have IQ’s that are less similar than identical twins reared in the same environment (McGue & others, 1993)” (Cherry). This proves that the learning environment that a child is exposed to affects their success and development.

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Additionally, childhood trauma affects a person’s life. The personal experience might push a person to be more harmful and alter their life decisions later in life. In an article by Nicola Davies quoted, “Serial killers were analyzed to understand the variables of childhood maltreatment and sexual aggression toward victims. The researchers found that serial killers treated badly during childhood tended to sexually assault their victims before murdering them. On the other hand, serial killers who did not experience childhood abuse did not display sexually violent behavior” (Davies). The behavior that a child is exposed to shows them that that is how they should treat others. This ties into nurture because it is related to how our peers contribute to how we develop.

On the other hand, some may argue that genetics is the main contribution to shaping a person. Sexual orientation, for example, is a very controversial topic when asking is it genetic or not. There have been studies to help support this. One states that it “clearly links sexual orientation in men with two regions of the human genome that have been implicated before, one on the X chromosome and one on chromosome 8” (Coghlan). This supports the thought that being gay is only strictly a science and just genetics because it can be pinned to a certain region. This theory is false because the environment plays a huge role in sexual orientation. According to an article by PBS, researchers discovered that sexuality is polygenic. The text states “Polygenic traits can be strongly influenced by the environment'(Akpan). The text also stated, “When the team looked for DNA patterns that had strong correlations, they found that no one gene could account for any more than 1 percent of people’s sexuality” (Akpan). This proves that a person’s sexual orientation is influenced by the environment, and not strictly just genetics. Social and experience play a role when discussing this matter.

In conclusion, when discussing the debate of nature vs. nurture there are both well-known subjects. The environmental factors are responsible for shaping a person. Without family, living conditions, and personal experience, a person would not be who they are today all play a role in an individual’s life. Anything a person is exposed to has an impact on their decisions, regardless of genetics.

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