Behavior genetics

Study level: Graduate study programme in psychology
Language: Croatian
Status: elective
Form of instruction with class hours: 30 hours of lectures, 30 hours seminars
Prerequisites: none
Student evaluation: written exam

Course description

History of behavior genetics; Basis of heredity (genes, chromosomes, gene mapping methods); Mendel's laws of heredity ; Gene-behavior mechanisms; Quantitative genetics theory; Methods of quantitative genetics (twin design, adoption design, family design); Methods of molecular biology and behavior genetics (linkage analysis, quantitative trait loci); Data analysis in behavior genetics (correlational analysis on genetically informative groups; model-fitting); Genetic influences and individual differences (general and specific cognitive abilities; personality and personality disorders; psychopathology); Environmental effects and individual differences (shared and non-shared environmental influences; Gene-environment interaction and correlation; Genetic influence on environmental measures).

Course objectives

Objective of this course is acquainting students with basic terminology in behavior genetics and research about genetical and environmental contribution to development of behavioral characteristics, such as intelligence, personality and psychopathology. Also, objective of this course is to enable students to follow the literature in the field of behavior genetics.

Required Readings

Plomin, R., DeFries, J.C., McClearn, G.E., & McGuffin, P. (2008). Behavioral genetics (5th ed.). New York: Worth Publishers.

Recommended readings

Parens, E. (2004). Genetic Differences and Human Identities: On Why Talking about Behavioral Genetics Is Important and Difficult. Hastings Center Report Special Supplement, 34 (1), 1-36.