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IELTS>major effect on personality:Characteristic we born or our life experiences?


Parmiss 1 / 1  
Jun 15, 2011   #1
Please help me to get feedback on my essay. I need at least 6.5 for writing academic essay!

Cambridge Book 7- Test 4- Writing Task 2:
Research indicates that the characteristics we are born with have more influence on our personality and development than any experiences we have in our life.

Which do you consider to be major influence?

Human is very complicated creature. Each human has his own special characteristics that make it unique among other humans. They are not only different in their appearance and physical characteristics, but also are different in their personality and internal characteristics. All of these aspects are shaped based on our genetic background and also our upbringing method. However, which one has more influence on human personality? Although some researches indicate that the characteristics that we inherent from our parents have more influence in our personality, I believe there are many examples that can deny this claim.

One of the best facts that deny the researcher's claim is the different personality of twins who have the same genetic characteristics. For example, there are many cases of sibling with physical resemblance that were born in the same family but grow in different environments and became very different people in term of personality.

Another hint needs to be add here, is the importance of education system. Generally speaking, if we accept this claim, then many of humans efforts for improving society will be useless. For example, we can say that nobody is guilty, because people who have violent personality, are born with this character and nobody can be blamed. Then, the punishment will be meaningless. Because we cannot punish a person for having a negative character that he or she has no control on that. Therefore, accepting this claim is ridiculous and makes the factor of authority useless.

Summary, I think that external factors such as our life experiences and our upbringing methods have major influence on our personality compared to the characteristics we are born with. [318 words]

klatz238 4 / 27  
Jun 15, 2011   #2
Dear Per Miss
Here are some views for you to consider in support of your points.
I have come across this kind of arguements on several occasions and the topic usually given is the places of 'Nature and Nuture' in human personality development? Nature is considered to include biological/genetic factors shaping human personality while Nuture simply represents the socialisation process (up-bringing) that an individual went through. Each time i come this arguement, majority of conclusions reached is that the combination of both Nature and Nuture helps in personality development and behavioural formation, that 'none have more effect than the other'.

However, as social scientist, I have a strong opposing view to this general saying; I believe that social forces (i mean Nature) have greater influence than genetic factors. A child came to this world with a clean, clear and impresionless mind (as John Locke stated in his 'principle of tabularacer', i think you should read that) with no feelings. His mind is like a 'blank slate' and can begin to develop feelings and impresions only when he starts interacting with subjects (note that subjects include both man and animal) around him. He'll them begin to percieve and form opinion base on his personal observations of those subjects close to him (Albert Bandura call these subjects 'role models' of observing children). You see that it is this perception and personal opinion generated from his observations of role models that forms anticidents or origin of child behavioural and personality for. It said that we are what we think, isn't it?

Yes! Genetic factors also counts but do not equate social factors in child characteristic development. This brings up an arguement of whether leaders are BORNE or MADE. You will agree with me that though they are borne (which means they possess leadership traits and potentials, don't we all?) but they cannot be good learders if they went throug a deficient training (see the place of Nuture).

In one of our study on human psychology, i read about one James B. Watson, a Behavioural Psychologist who said
"give me a dozen infact, and I assure you of making each anything I want; Lawyers, Doctors,..., even Thiefs" Watson was very certain that, regardless of a child's ancenstoral origin or biological inheritance, he could mould (not physical characteristics but in terms of personal characteristics and skills) any child put to bed by anybody to become anything he so wishes.

So in summary, i think we have all been human (nature) before we become a person (personality made from nuture). If it is true that our personality are formed base on our genetic factors (which we all went through), then how come there is variations in our personality characteristics? The answer lies in the type of socialisation process (up-bringing) we went through and the kind of social forces in that forms the essential features of the society we grew from.

Best wishes!
klatz238 4 / 27  
Jun 15, 2011   #3
In addition to the above, I also read somewhere that a child of say 13yrs old was found in the woods and this child counldn't talk nor walk. She only mumbles and crawls like animals. She was given foods but could only eat raw vegitables and other kind of leaves that animals eat. All attempt at teacher her to walk, talk and become a normal human proved abortive. She died at the age of 23. My opinion is that this child would have lived longer if left where she grew from. Again, you see the supiriority of Nurture over Nature.

Oh! I have just noticed my spelling errors, please kindly make corrections. Thank you.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,335 129  
Jun 16, 2011   #4
Thanks for the great discussion, Kunle!

I'll edit the essay here:

Humans are very complicated creatures.

Each human has his its own special characteristics that make it unique among other humans.

... are many examples that can deny be used as evidence to challenge this claim.

One of the best facts that deny contradict the researcher's claim is ...

For example, we can say that nobody is guilty, because people who have violent personality, are born with this character and nobody can be blamed. Then, the punishment will be meaningless. Because we cannot punish a person for having a negative character that he or she has no control on that. -------Punishment is part of nature, which influenced development. We use punishment to influence the development of people's ideas so that they do not commit crimes. I think this part is not a strong argument.

In conclusion, I think that external ...

Great job!!! You are a good writer.
OP Parmiss 1 / 1  
Jun 17, 2011   #5
Dear Kevin, many thanks for your valuable advice.

I also appreciate Kunle for his help.


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