How is intelligence determined by the environment and genetics? essay sample



The question of whether the IQ can be inherited bothered scientists for a long time. Human intelligence is a difficult object to study mainly because it can be defined and measured differently. Most scientists define intelligence as the ability to learn from experiences and adapt to the changing environment. By this they mean humans possessing critical and abstract thinking, planning, reasoning, and problem-solving skills. But is it possible to assume that intelligence is not exceptionally acquired feature but an inborn trait? Do not we think that parents with the high IQ will raise a similarly smart kid?

Numerous studies on the genes that influence intelligence enlightened similarities and differences in  IQ within families. Conducting the research on adopted kids, siblings, and twins, researchers concluded that their difference in intelligence makes up nearly 50 percent. In other studies, they researched entire genomes to detect areas responsible for intellect. As the results appeared quite vague, genetics concluded that a large number of genes are involved in determining intelligence and make a small contribution to individual’s IQ.

The fact that intellect is determined by environment, on the contrary, is solid. Such factors as child’s home environment, parenting, access to education and resources of information, or even nutrition form intelligence of a person. In fact, environmental factors are tightly interrelated with genetic material, and scientists found it hard to differentiate the impacts of each separate factor. Therefore, if IQ of children and parents is similar, it must be due to the combination of genetically inherited features and shared environment.

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