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3 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back

Aim: To discover whether ways of responding to the environment remain stable throughout life.

Method: 133 children's behaviours were observed and their parents were interviewed. The parents were asked about the child's routine and its reactions to change.

Results: The children fell into three types:

Easy - Happy, flexible and regular.

Difficult - Demanding, inflexible and cried a lot.

Slow to warm up - Did not respond well to change or new experiences.

Conclusion: These ways of responding to the environment stayed with the children as they developed, concluding that temperament is innate.

Evaluation: It was a longitudinal study, therefore it allowed the researchers to support the view that temperament is innate. A disadvantage of longitudinal studies is that some participants could drop out partway through (they do have the right to withdraw). This could affect the results.

The children were from middle-class families in New York, therefore the results cannot be generalised to the public.

The parents may have been biased in the interview to make their children look better than they actually are.

Aim: To test the idea that temperament is innate.

Method: 228 pairs of monozygotic twins and 172 pairs of dizygotic twins. They looked at three dimensions of behaviour:

Emotionality - how strong the child's emotional response was

Activity - how energetic the child was

Sociability - how much the child wanted to be with other people

Then they compared the scores for each pair of twins.

Results: There was a closer correlation between the scores of the monozygotic twins than between the scores of the dizygotic twins.

Conclusion: Temperament has a genetic basis.

Evaluation: The MZ twins (genetically identical) were more similar in emotionality, activity and sociability than the DZ twins, who are only as genetically similar as any other siblings. Therefore, this study supports the view that temperament is innate.

MZ twins are treated in very similar ways. The correlation between the MZ twins' scores could be explained by their environment instead of their genes.

Research carried out on twins cannot be generalised to the whole population because not everyone is a twin.

Aim: To investigate whether temperament is due to biological differences.