Personality Differences: African Americans vs. Caucasians

2255 words 10 pages
Psychological Differences between African-American and Caucasian Individuals: An Endless Controversy
Alana Carran
Psychology 308K 7980
Semester 1209

Alana Carran
Dawn K. Lewis
Psychology 308K
15 December 2012
Psychological Differences between African-American and Caucasian Individuals: An Endless Controversy

Introduction Investigating the psychological differences between African-Americans and their Caucasian counterparts has been fraught with contention, an endless debate revolving around whether or not the lower IQ scores of African-Americans to Caucasians is to be attributed to either environmental or biological factors, or both. Caucasians and African-Americans endure a number of both physical and psychological
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Brain Size A number of studies have researched the variations in brain size between African-Americans and Caucasians with the intention of discerning what this implies about overall intelligence. Studies conducted using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has found a correlation of brain size with IQ to be .40 (Jensen, 1998). Larger brains contain more neurons and synapses and process information faster. These racial differences are present at birth and continue throughout a lifetime, with East Asians averaging one cubic inch more in cranial capacity than Caucasians, who in turn average five more cubic inches than African-Americans (Jensen, 1998). While this seems to be indicative of brain size equating IQ score and overall intelligence, there is some evidence that may suggest this correlation to be inaccurate, or have many unaddressed lurking variables that greatly affect these averages. The brain size differences between males and females are much more significant than the brain differences between whites and blacks, and yet males and females tend to score the same on IQ tests. Similarly, a community in Ecuador have a genetic anomaly that produces very small heads (and small brains), yet their intelligence is scored as high as their “normal-brained” counterparts (Nisbett, 2007). About 25% of the genes in the American black population


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