Nature vs Nurture

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Psych 111 030 Paper #1 Elliot Schaja
Dr. Grayson 2/14/2011

Nature vs. Nurture
A personal characteristic that fits well into the nature vs. nurture debate is my Arithmetic ability. While this attribute can be defined as my actual math ability, measured by my high school and college grade-point-average in Math courses as well as my SAT scores on the Math section, I am also referring to the advantages assimilated with “being good at math.” This includes being able to think in an analytical way to solve puzzles and being able to estimate certain calculations with greater proximity such as tipping a waitress. After analyzing how my math skills have developed throughout my life, I have noticed the incredible influence both nature and nurture have had on me. Throughout the course of my life, nature has played a significant role in my observable math abilities. Nature refers to the characteristics that are inherited from our parents. In my case, both my mother and father have very strong analytical backgrounds that lead me to believe that my arithmetic skills are inherited genes. My mother studied economics and graduated with a degree in business from Columbia University before spending a majority of her career in finance. My father majored in Physics in his undergraduate studies, earned a degree in business from Columbia University, and is currently in finance as well. The family connection to math doesn’t stop there. My older sister, aunt, uncle, and both sets of grandparents have a noticeably higher intelligence in the maths and sciences than they do in other aspects of observable intelligence. In order to gain a further understanding on nature’s influence on math skills I conducted a small survey amongst ten of my friends with relatively high GPAs at the University of Michigan and all with similar academic drives. Five of the students I selected considered themselves very good at math and claimed that their parents...
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