How Personality Can Be Accurately Described By The American Psychology Association ( Apa )

720 Words Nov 8th, 2015 3 Pages
Personality can be accurately described by the American Psychology Association (APA) as “[the]individual differences in characteristic patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving”. A person’s personality is also the most complicated thing about them; therefore, one is bound to wonder what determines an individual 's personality, which brings one to the age-old argument of nature versus nurture. Philosopher John Locke introduces us to “blank slate theory” by expanding on an earlier theory introduced in the fourth century by Aristotle. This is the most radical theory on the nurture side of the debate. Those who believe solely in nurture, empiricists, believe that, beyond basic instincts, a person’s personality is made up of his or her experiences. Research in the field of child development supports Locke’s theory by proving that experiences are a central part of brain development. When a child is born, he or she is completely untouched, or a blank slate; therefore, the only thing that has an effect on any given person’s personality is life experiences. A common example of this is when a child says please and thank you; this is a learned behavior from watching human interaction. However, Locke is not the only psychologist and/or philosopher who is on the nurture side of this debate. Theorist John B. Watson believed that you could train anyone to do anything regardless of their genetic background, and Albert Bandura also conducted a Bobo doll experiment which demonstrated how…

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