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the dispute over the relative contributions of hereditary and constitutional factors (nature) and environmental factors (nurture) to the development of an individual. Nativists emphasize the role of heredity, whereas environmentalists emphasize sociocultural and ecological factors, including family attitudes, child-rearing practices, and economic status. Most scientists now accept that there is a close interaction between hereditary and environmental factors in the ontogeny of behavior (see epigenesis). Also called heredity–environment controversy; nature–nurture issue; nature–nurture problem.

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Psychology term of the day

June 16th 2024

job analysis

job analysis

the collection and analysis of information about a specific job. Data are obtained through interviews with or written questionnaires from those doing or supervising the job, or through observation or audiovisual recordings of the job in action. Important classes of information include the behaviors, tools, working conditions, and skills involved in the job. Job analysis is the first step in developing effective personnel selection, employee evaluation, job evaluation, and personnel training programs. Once data have been collected, the role of the job analyst is to use statistical techniques and subjective judgment to determine the primary dimensions of a job and to identify those positions that are sufficiently similar to be classified as the same job.