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In a UCL study of almost 40,000 pairs of parents and children, it was found that a child’s educational success depends on both the genes that they have inherited from their parents, as well as the genes they have not. Parents pass on traits through nature and nurture, leaving children with an intertwined mix of both; a child’s lifestyle can affect their grades. This concept is referred to as ‘genetic nurture’ in which parental genes determine the child’s environment whether the child inherited them or not. For example, parents with a higher genetic propensity for learning may have a greater interest in activities such as reading that, in turn, nurture learning in their offspring. The researchers found that genetic nurture “had about half as much impact on education success as genetic inheritance”. The Lead Researcher asserted that both parents have an equal effect on the learning capabilities of their children, but it is highlighted that genetic lottery plays a large part nether less. That is to say, parents cannot have complete control over their child’s academic progression. In that regard, this study is important in understanding how educational attainment and achievement is passed on through families; hopefully, this research will help break the cycles of disadvantage across generations.

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