Psychology 1000 Chapter Notes - Chapter 4: Conscientiousness, Trait Theory, Social Darwinism

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Published on 19 Apr 2013
School
Western University
Department
Psychology
Course
Psychology 1000
Professor
Psychology
Chapter 4: Genes, Evolution, and Behaviour
GENETIC INFLUENCES
Hippocrates
Suggested that semen contains not body parts, but rather some sort of design
for the formation of the offspring
Genotype: the specific genetic makeup of an individual
Phenotype: the observable characteristics produced by that genetic endowment
It is estimated that about half of all genes target brain structure and function
Polygenic transmission: a number of genes working together to create a particular
phenotypic characteristic
Recombinant DNA procedures: researchers use certain enzymes to cut the long
threadlike molecules of genetic DNA into pieces, combine them with DNA from another
organism, and insert them into a host organism, such as a bacterium
Gene knockout: a procedure that alters a specific gene in a way that prevents it from
carrying out its normal function. This can be used in psychology to study how certain
neurotransmitters affect the brain and functionality
Genetic engineering allows scientists to duplicate and alter genetic material or,
potentially to repair dysfunctional genes
Heritability coefficient: the extent to which the degree of variation in a particular
characteristic among a group of people can be attributed to genetic factors
Heredity
means the passage of characteristics from parents to offspring by way of
genes
Heritability
means how much of the variation in a characteristic within a population can
be attributed to genetic differences
Concordance: the likelihood that 2 people share a particular characteristic
Adoption study: a person who was adopted early in life is compared on some
characteristic both with the biological parents, with whom the person shares genetic
endowment, and with the adoptive parents. If the person is more similar to their
biological parents, a genetic influence is suggested. If a person is more similar to their
biological parents, an environmental influence is suggested
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Psychology
Twin studies: a behaviour genetics method in which identical and fraternal twins are
compared on some characteristic; this method is particularly informative if the twins
have been raised in different environments
GENETIC INFLUENCES ON BEHAVIOUR
The more genetically similar 2 individuals, the higher the correlation between
even genetically identical individuals, however, is not perfect, indicating an
important role for the environment. “How do heredity and environment interact
to affect intelligence?”
Reaction range: the range of possibilitiesthe upper and lower limitsthat the genetic
code allows. An individual inherits a range for potential intelligence that has upper and
lower limits. Environmental effects will then determine where the person falls within
these genetically determined boundaries
Hans Eysenck argued that personality differences could be traced to differences
in brain development or function.
Personality trait theory is called
Five Factor Model
. Believe that individual
differences in personality can be accounted for by variation along 5 broad
personality dimensions
Five factor model:
1. Extraversion-introversion
2. Agreeableness
3. Conscientiousness
4. Neuroticism
5. Openness to experience
Genetic factors relevant for personality interact with the environment by
predisposing an individual toward particular types of activities because of
genetically influenced differences in brain activity or other physical characteristics
EVOLUTION AND BEHAVIOUR
Biologically based mechanisms: mechanisms that receive input from the environment,
process the information, and respond to it
What evolves are genetically produced physical structures that interact with the
demands of the environment to produce behaviour
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Document Summary

Suggested that semen contains not body parts, but rather some sort of design for the formation of the offspring. Genotype: the specific genetic makeup of an individual. Phenotype: the observable characteristics produced by that genetic endowment. It is estimated that about half of all genes target brain structure and function. Polygenic transmission: a number of genes working together to create a particular phenotypic characteristic. Recombinant dna procedures: researchers use certain enzymes to cut the long threadlike molecules of genetic dna into pieces, combine them with dna from another organism, and insert them into a host organism, such as a bacterium. Gene knockout: a procedure that alters a specific gene in a way that prevents it from carrying out its normal function. This can be used in psychology to study how certain neurotransmitters affect the brain and functionality. Genetic engineering allows scientists to duplicate and alter genetic material or, potentially to repair dysfunctional genes.

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