Thursday, February 08, 2007
Nature or Nurture?!
The discussion that has occupied Psychologists and scientist for decades has been; are we a result of our nature (genes and DNA) or our nurture (environment, upbringing).
I am just watching a program about Child Genius. It is astonishing seeing what these genius children are capable of doing. At a young age of 6 they can solve GCSE math, an 11 year old has become the youngest publishing author. These are not average, everyday children. Their lives are a constant round of competitions and contests. But what makes such an exceptional child? Are they born this way or can they really be made?
But what exactly do we mean by 'genius'. Like the theory of relativity, it's one of those concepts that everyone seems familiar with, but few can explain it. How do you identify a genius? Are their brains different? Some people equate genius with a high IQ. But IQ is not always a predictor of high accomplishments in life. Academic achievement is also an unreliable guide. While it's true that Einstein excelled at mathematics, physics and music, the school records of other geniuses are often less impressive.
Exceptional ability may be a key ingredient; you must also throw courage and creativity into the mix. Top that off with a talent for visualising problems from new and original angles, and you may be getting a genius!
What are your thoughts? What is a genius?