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Myers’ PSYCHOLOGY. Chapter 3 The Nature and Nurture Of Behavior. Genes: Our Biological Blueprint. Chromosomes threadlike structures made of DNA that contain the genes DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) complex molecule containing the genetic information that makes up the chromosomes

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Myers psychology

Chapter 3

The Nature and Nurture

Of Behavior

Genes our biological blueprint
Genes: Our Biological Blueprint

  • Chromosomes

    • threadlike structures made of DNA that contain the genes

  • DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid)

    • complex molecule containing the genetic information that makes up the chromosomes

    • has two strands-forming a “double helix”--held together by bonds between pairs of nucleotides

Genes our biological blueprint1
Genes: Our Biological Blueprint

  • Genes

    • biochemical units of heredity that make up the chromosomes

    • a segment of DNA capable of synthesizing a protein

  • Genome

    • the complete instructions for making an organism

    • consisting of all the genetic material in its chromosomes

Genes their location and composition






Genes: Their Location and Composition

Evolutionary psychology
Evolutionary Psychology

  • Natural Selection

    • the principle that, among the range of inherited trait variations, those that lead to increased reproduction and survival will most likely be passed on to succeeding generations

  • Mutations

    • random errors in gene replication that lead to a change in the sequence of nucleotides

    • the source of all genetic diversity

Evolutionary psychology1
Evolutionary Psychology

  • Evolutionary Psychology

    • the study of the evolution of behavior and the mind, using the principles of natural selection

  • Gender

    • in psychology, the characteristics, whether biologically or socially influenced, by which people define male and female

Evolutionary psychology2
Evolutionary Psychology

  • Men preferred attractive physical features suggesting youth and health

  • Women preferred resources and social status

Behavior genetics
Behavior Genetics

  • Behavior Genetics

    • study of the relative power and limits of genetic and environmental influences on behavior

  • Environment

    • every nongenetic influence, from prenatal nutrition to the people and things around us

Behavior genetics1






sex only

Same or

opposite sex

Behavior Genetics

  • Identical Twins

    • develop from a single fertilized egg that splits in two, creating two genetically identical organisms

  • Fraternal Twins

    • develop from separate eggs

    • genetically no closer than brothers and sisters, but they share the fetal environment

Behavior genetics2
Behavior Genetics

  • Temperament

    • a person’s characteristic emotional reactivity and intensity

  • Heritability

    • the proportion of variation among individuals that we can attribute to genes

    • may vary, depending on the range of populations and environments studied

Behavior genetics3
Behavior Genetics

  • Interaction

    • the dependence of the effect of one factor (such as environment) on another factor (such as heredity)

  • Molecular Genetics

    • the subfield of biology that studies the molecular structure and function of genes

Environmental influence
Environmental Influence

  • Two placental arrangements in identical twins

Environmental influence1

Rat brain




Rat brain




Environmental Influence

  • Experience affects brain development

Environmental influence2
Environmental Influence

  • A trained brain

Environmental influence3
Environmental Influence

  • Culture

    • the enduring behaviors, ideas, attitudes, and traditions shared by a large group of people and transmitted from one generation to the next

  • Norm

    • an understood rule for accepted and expected behavior

Environmental influence4
Environmental Influence

  • Personal Space

    • the buffer zone we like to maintain around our bodies

  • Memes

    • self-replicating ideas, fashions, and innovations passed from person to person

The nature and nurture of gender
The Nature and Nurture of Gender

  • X Chromosome

    • the sex chromosome found in both men and women

    • females have two; males have one

    • an X chromosome from each parent produces a female child

  • Y Chromosome

    • the sex chromosome found only in men

    • when paired with an X chromosome from the mother, it produces a male child

The nature and nurture of gender1
The Nature and Nurture of Gender

  • Testosterone

    • the most important of the male sex hormones

    • both males and females have it

    • additional testosterone in males stimulates

      • growth of male sex organs in the fetus

      • development of male sex characteristics during puberty

  • Role

    • a set of expectations (norms) about a social position

    • defining how those in the position ought to behave

The nature and nurture of gender2
The Nature and Nurture of Gender

  • Gender Role

    • a set of expected behaviors for males and females

  • Gender Identity

    • one’s sense of being male or female

  • Gender-typing

    • the acquisition of a traditional masculine or feminine role

The nature and nurture of gender5
The Nature and Nurture of Gender

  • Social Learning Theory

    • theory that we learn social behavior by observing and imitating and by being rewarded or punished

  • Gender Schema Theory

    • theory that children learn from their cultures a concept of what it means to be male and female and that they adjust their behavior accordingly

The nature and nurture of gender6
The Nature and Nurture of Gender

  • Two theories of gender typing