Adoption studies represent a unique type of research design that uses information from adoptees, adoptive parents, and biological parents to study the environmental and genetic effects on a target trait, disorder, or disease. This research design model provides a method to disentangle genetic factors from parenting style and childhood environmental adverse effects. Another feature of the adoptive study research design is the ability to look for interactions between genetic and environmental factors. Adoption studies are relevant because they have a strong historical track record in psychology, intelligence, personality, and abnormal psychology research. Despite advances in molecular genetics, adoption studies will continue to be valuable in future research. This entry highlights key methodologic features of the adoption study design and important research findings from this ...

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