behavioural genetics


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behavioural genetics

A field that studies the genetic basis of behaviour, by singling out the nature from the nature-nurture debate.

Tools of behavioural genetics
Twin studies, adoption studies.

Progress of behavioural genetics to scientific legitimacy has been hampered by reports linking specific chromosomal defects to certain diseases, which are disproven with subsequent studies. Examples include alleged association of an extra Y chromosome with increased aggression in men, schizophrenia to a gene on chromosome 5, psychosis to chromosome 11, manic-depressive (bipolar) disorderto chromosomes 11 and X, and dyslexia to chromosome 15. The data of behavioural genetics research is criticised for the misuse of statistical methods, failure to properly define the trait being studied, bias in selection of cases and controls and inadequate sample size.
References in periodicals archive ?
Children differ genetically in how easy or difficult they find learning and we need to recognise and respect these individual differences," said Robert Plomin, professor of behavioural genetics at Kings College London and an author of the study.
Lead author Robert Plomin, an expert in behavioural genetics, said that people immediately think of schools if children differ in their GCSE scores, but if schools accounted for all the variance, then children in one classroom would all be the same.
Genewatch's report on the United Kingdom's database, for instance, summarily rejects "the overall approach" as flawed, stating "[a]ll research into behavioural genetics relies on an approach that has been subject to severe criticism.

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