Competency 111.6.3: Psychology – The graduate can describe and discuss the principles and concepts of psychology.
Objective 111.6.3-14: Analyze the key elements of the nature-nurture controversy.
Is intelligence an inherited or learned characteristic? How do we acquire our personality traits? Are we born with certain characteristics, or do environmental factors shape us into the people that we are? These
are questions that psychologists have been trying to answer for over 100 years. Many studies have been conducted with wide-ranging conclusions. In this task you will write an essay exploring the nature-
nurture controversy. You will also examine the methods researchers have used to study the factors that influence characteristics or traits and the varying outcomes of the studies. There are several researchers
and studies cited in the recommended text, but it is recommended that you do additional research to gain a better understanding of the methods and outcomes of the studies.
Write a brief essay (suggested length of 2–4 pages) in which you:
A. Describe the basic elements of the nature-nurture controversy (i.e., what is meant specifically by “nature” and “nurture”).
1. Discuss what is controversial in the nature-nurture debate.
B. Compare and contrast two studies on nature-nurture. Be sure to:
1. Describe each study (e.g., subjects, methods, traits being studied).
2. Discuss the similarities and differences between the studies.
3. Discuss the conclusions of each study.
C. When you use sources, include all in-text citations and references in APA format.
Note: When bulleted points are present in the task prompt, the level of detail or support called for in the rubric refers to those bulleted points.
Note: For definitions of terms commonly used in the rubric, see the Rubric Terms web link included in the Evaluation Procedures section.
Note: When using sources to support ideas and elements in a paper or project, the submission MUST include APA formatted in-text citations with a corresponding reference list for any direct quotes or
paraphrasing. It is not necessary to list sources that were consulted if they have not been quoted or paraphrased in the text of the paper or project.
Note: No more than a combined total of 30% of a submission can be directly quoted or closely paraphrased from sources, even if cited correctly. For tips on using APA style, please refer to the APA Handout
web link included in the General Instructions section.
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