The Psychological Record

, Volume 7, Issue 2, pp 45–54 | Cite as

“Heredity” and “environment” in biology and psychology

  • N. H. Pronko


Hereditary theories are considered that purport to explain behavioral facts. The use of the term, heredity, is traced to its non-scientific, common sense derivation in the distant past. Samples of alleged inheritance of anatomic, physiologic and behavioral data are examined, and a frustrated attempt is made to achieve a sharp definition of the term, heredity, by appeal to the specialized field of biology known as genetics. An examination of psychological writings for a clear specification of this term and its constant correlate, environment, is equally fruitless. An alternative theoretical approach is then sketched which requires neither heredity nor environment as explanatory principles for behavioral data.


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Copyright information

© Association of Behavior Analysis International 1957

Authors and Affiliations

  • N. H. Pronko
    • 1
  1. 1.University of WichitaUSA

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