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and psychologists for many centuries trying to find out which one was more important: the environmental influences that can nurture an individual or the individual’s inborn nature. Today, psychologists have framed this subject under heredity versus environment. The issue of nature-nurture focuses its questions on how much heredity and environment can affect a person’s intelligent quotient and personality characteristics, for example. Advocates of the Nature theory believe that a person’s heredity determines not only a child’s phenotypic characteristics but everything else as well. This includes intelligence, gender, personality traits as being encoded in the genes. For example, criminal cases may be excusable and divorces might be found justifiable if “behavioral genes” are proven to be present in our genes. If for some reason genetics didn’t contribute anything, then fraternal twins, who were raised in the same environment, would be similar, despite their genes being different. However, though twin studies conducted demonstrate that fraternal twins do more closely appear like one another than do brothers and sisters who are non-twin, fraternal twins also display this same likeness when raised apart—just like in twin studies done with identical twins (45). Nurture theory advocates feel that a child has a clean slate and that the life experiences they gain while growing up along with the influences from different people they encounter determines what is written on the child’s slate. When a woman is pregnant, she is usually advised to use caution because the environment can have positive or negative effects on the baby (48). Expecting mothers are told to not do drugs, watch their diet, and to exercise carefully. This suggests that environment can affect behavior during the early life stages. In the twin studies mentioned in the book, it demonstrates how identical twins are by no means exactly the same, despite the fact that they are alike in most features (46). Heredity and environment will always play a role in a child’s development. It is the parent’s responsibility to ensure that their child’s environment is safe while at the same time cultivating their minds to the maximum potential. Works Cited Santrock, John W. Essentials of Life-Span Development. New York: McGraw Hill, 2008.