How is heritability estimates applied in different cases


First, heritability estimates apply to populations under quite specific conditions and not to individuals. For example, the statement that the heritability of Stanford-Binet IQ scores for U.S. school children is .70 does not mean that the IQ of a particular child is 70 per cent determined by heredity.

Second, even though intelligence has significant genetic component, environmental conditions can be crucially important individual’s mental abilities are a function of genetic potential in interaction with such prenatal postnatal environmental conditions as nutrition, health, enriched or impoverished stimulation, the ‘ climate of the home, and the type of feedback provided for behaviour.

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