References and Further Reading 1. Behaviorists and Behaviorisms Behaviorism, notoriously, came in various sorts and has been, also notoriously, subject to variant sortings:
Northwestern University This paper explores the theory of behaviorism and evaluates its effectiveness as a theory of personality. Additional research in this field by scientists such as Thorndike is also included.
As a result of this critical look at behaviorism, its weaknesses as a comprehensive personality theory are revealed. At the same time, its merits when restricted to certain areas of psychology and treatment of disorders are discussed. For as long as human beings can remember, they have always been interested in what makes them who they are and what aspects of their being set each of them apart from others of their species.
The answer according to behaviorists is nothing more than the world in which they grew up. Behaviorism is the theory that human nature can be fully understood by the laws inherent in the natural environment.
As one of the oldest theories of personality, behaviorism dates back to Descartes, who introduced the idea of a stimulus and called the person a machine dependent on external events whose soul was the ghost in the machine.
Behaviorism takes this idea to another level. Although most theories operate to some degree on the assumption that humans have some sort of free will Behaviorism classical conditioning are moral thinking entities, behaviorism refuses to acknowledge the internal workings of persons.
In the mind of the behaviorist, persons are nothing more than simple mediators between behavior and the environment Skinner,p The dismissal of the internal workings of human beings leads to one problem opponents have with the behavioral theory.
This, along with its incapability of explaining the human phenomenon of language and memory, build a convincing case against behaviorism as a comprehensive theory. Yet although these criticisms indicate its comprehensive failure, they do not deny that behaviorism and its ideas have much to teach the world about the particular behaviors expressed by humankind.
While studying digestive reflexes in dogs, Russian scientist, Pavlov, made the discovery that led to the real beginnings of behavioral theory. He could reliably predict that dogs would salivate when food was placed in the mouth through a reflex called the "salivary reflex" in digestion.
Yet he soon realized that, after time, the salivary reflex occurred even before the food was offered. Pavlov continued experimenting with the dogs using a tone to signal for food. What Pavlov discovered was first order conditioning. In this process, a neutral stimulus that causes no natural response in an organism is associated with an unconditioned stimulus, an event that automatically or naturally causes a response.
This usually temporal association causes the response to the unconditioned stimulus, the unconditioned response, to transfer to the neutral stimulus. The unconditioned stimulus no longer needs to be there for the response to occur in the presence of the formerly neutral stimulus.
Given that this response is not natural and has to be learned, the response is now a conditioned response and the neutral stimulus is now a conditioned stimulus. The unconditioned response of salivation became a conditioned response to the newly conditioned stimulus of the tone Beecroft,pp.
When another neutral stimulus is introduced and associated with the conditioned stimulus, even further conditioning takes place. The conditioned response trained to occur only after the conditioned stimulus now transfers to the neutral stimulus making it another conditioned stimulus. Now the second conditioned stimulus can cause the response without both the first conditioned stimulus and the unconditioned stimulus.
When second order or even first order conditioning occur with frightening unconditioned stimuli, phobias or irrational fears develop. In a study performed by Watson and Rayneran intense fear of rats was generated in a little boy named Albert.
Whenever Albert would reach for a rat, the researchers would make a loud noise and scare him.Behaviorist Learning Theory. Behaviorism is an approach to psychology based on the proposition that behavior can be researched scientifically without recourse to inner mental states.
It is a form of materialism, denying any independent significance for mind. Its significance for psychological treatment has been profound, making it one of the pillars of pharmacological therapy. Operant conditioning is a method of learning that occurs through rewards and punishments for behavior.
Through operant conditioning, an individual makes an association between a particular behavior and a consequence (Skinner, ). After Conditioning: After the events of an Operant Conditioning story, a behavior either has an increased or decreased rate of occurrence.
Often there is a big increase or decrease specifically. Pavlov came across classical conditioning unintentionally during his research into animals' gastric systems.
Whilst measuring the salivation rates of dogs, he found that they would produce saliva when they heard or smelt food in anticipation of feeding. This is a normal reflex response which we. Ivan Pavlov and his theory of classical conditioning had a profound impact on the understanding of human behavior.
This lesson explains classical conditioning and Pavlov's contributions to psychology. If you truly wish to better understand human behavior then this book is indispensable.
About Behaviorism is written at the intermediate to advanced level and may present notable struggles to those outside the psychology field.