Apart from the disagreements that exist between psychologists as regards to the nature that intelligence takes, psychologists always debate on various aspects that influence the intelligence of a person. As such, this debate always takes one direction in coming up with the arguments. The psychologists always argue on which aspect between the ‘nature’ and ‘nurture’ has a bigger impact on a person’s intelligence. Although the psychologists agree that all the two aspects above contribute to the intelligence of an individual, they always differ when they try to discuss on how much these aspects contribute. This is a field that the psychologists and other important people have not given correct positions to. However, it is necessary to note that both of the two mentioned aspects play a role in influencing the intelligence a person will end up getting. In the several decades, the field of cognitive psychology has managed to show an impressive development in producing data that affects the architecture of the mind (Collin, 2013).
In the debate that exists as to which, between the genetic and environmental factors affects the human intelligence the most, Jean Piaget gives primacy to the individual cognitive process. In his early works, Piaget mainly focused on the issue of knowledge development, whereby he investigated the manner in which knowledge evolved. He achieved this through questioning and interviewing several children on matters that are related to logical reasoning. In doing this, he avoided the social factors that influence the intelligence of a person. Through his main research project termed as the development of the child, he mainly talked about the social process of cognitive and moral development (Piaget, 2001). Early in his works, Piaget insisted on the social elements that existed in the logical knowledge. Social life, he argued, is a necessary condition towards the development of logic. Many scholars have always argued on what affects the knowledge of an individual, whether it depends on the social factors or it is internally construed. Psychology is something that human beings can acquire through various mans. It is important to argue that an individual’s psychology affects their intelligence in a large extent. A person’s logic, in most cases, arises depending on the contact they have with the opposing concepts that other people may have. As such, they develop a desire f wanting to know if whatever the other people are talking about is true. As such, the humans get to acquire new knowledge. Through this study and argument that was made by Jean Piaget, then we are in a good position to argue that the intelligence that a human being acquires depends on a number of factors. These factors may be socially construed, or they are genetically motivated. As all of these factors dictate the psychology of an individual, it therefore becomes necessary to conclude that Piaget’s argument led to conclusions that the intelligence of a person depends on their psychology to the worldly happenings (Piaget, 1980).
Lev Vygotsky, on the other hand, is best remembered for his sociocultural theory as well as the zone of Proximal Development. Effectively, he argued that there is more to learning than the mere acquisition of the ability to think by individuals. Learning, he argued, involves the acquisition of several abilities that are specialized for thinking of varied things. Human intelligence and development, he argued, was as a result of several dynamic interactions that existed between the individuals in question and the society in which they lived. Due to the sociological factors that he argued on, the parents and the teachers therefore have a better chance and opportunity to foster the learning process in children. They can achieve this by ensuring that they provide educational opportunities that always lie within an individual’s zone of proximal development (Vygotskiĭ et al, 2004). The interactions that the children have with the society at their earlier ages always work in shaping their psychologies and the manner in which they interpret and understand different issues. As such, if the interactions they get are negative in nature, then this could result to the children failing to appreciate the various mediums through which they would learn. By explaining this through his sociocultural theory, Vygotsky achieved to effectively state the important role that psychology plays in determining the manner in which individuals learn, and hence, their intelligence.
Maslow contributed greatly to the field of positive psychology. According to Maslow, positive psychology is an important aspect in a human being’s life due to a number of factors. The positive experiences that an individual gets during their earlier lives, the positive emotions that their parents subject them to and the strengths in character that they develop works greatly in determining the manner in which individuals end up appreciating the experiences they are subjected to in the world. Through subjecting the children who are in the earlier years to positives in education and other essential aspects, then the parents affect their psychologies positively. In a great way, Maslow argues, the children learn to appreciate the things and experiences that they are subjected to. This affects their intelligence (Maslow, 1998). Therefore, according to Maslow, positive psychology affects the human intelligence positively, and the negative psychology affects the intelligence negatively.
The three psychologists discussed above, to some extent, agree on the role that psychology plays towards enhancing an individual’s intelligence. However, this depends on the manner that the individuals partake the conditions that they are subjected to in their early times.
Collin, C., & DK Publishing, Inc (2013). The psychology book. New York [N.Y.: DK Pub.
Maslow, A. H., Stephens, D. C., Heil, G., & Maslow, A. H. (1998). Maslow on management. New York: John Wiley.
Piaget, J., In Elkind, D., & In Flavell, J. H. (2001). Studies in cognitive development: Essays in honor of Jean Piaget. New York: Oxford University Press.
Piaget, J. (1980). Adaptation and intelligence: Organic selection and phenocopy. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Vygotskiĭ, L. S., Rieber, R. W., Robinson, D. K., & Bruner, J. S. (2004). The essential Vygotsky. New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers.