Behavior psychology is a science that focuses on studying the peculiarities of human nature and the inner world. It is a wide sphere for research and one of the most used topics for students to write. Behavior psychology helps to explain the reasons for any person’s behavior and is an extremely interesting field not only for the scholar researches but also for everyday life. Behaviorism as a school of psychology is accentuating on the exploring acts of human beings in the environment. It is undeniable that human being is the mysterious sphere that needs investigation. Behavior is the tiny part of that significant phenomenon. So keep reading and learn more about it.
Every human being is unique, and this fact makes the study of human and their behavior complicated. For this reason, behavioral approaches need to be deep and take much time to give significant results. The behaviorist movement started to exist in 1913. This year John Watson published an article with the title “Psychology as the behaviorist views it”. This article included the list of assumptions that expressed the crucial thesis of methodology and behavioral analysis.
How to investigate behavior?
One of the basic assumptions states that all behavior could be learned from the environment. This means that inner factors in observations are highly excluded. One more assumption states that psychology is a science and all theories should be supported by reliable empirical facts. Such information can be received only by attentive and accurate observation and its measurements. The goal of psychology as a science is to predict and then to control.
Behavior refers to the apparent behavior and differentiates it with the internal emotion and thinking. Behaviorists do not reject the existence of emotions and cognition, but they do not take them into consideration when studying. This could be explained by the fact that only that behavior that could be observed is able to be measured in an objective and scientific way. However, some of the internal factors should be explained with behavioral terms. To this list belongs such internal event as thinking.
The difference between human and animal behavior
One of the behavioral assumptions states that there is not a great difference between the studying of human beings and similar in animals. Animal and human behavior has no qualitative distinction between each other. According to this, researches can be completed with the help of animals and do not require the constant use of human beings. For that reasons, lots of observation learning are carried out with the use of pigeons and rats. These animals help behavior to receive some data quickly and more accurately as the environment of the animals could be easily controlled.
It doesn’t matter how complex the behavior is; it always is the result of stimulus-response. This fact expresses and explains the purpose of the psychology: to predict the reaction, giving a stimulus or to define what the stimulus caused to the particular reaction. This is how most of the psychological observations are organized. The objects that need to be observed (usually animals) are placed in the controlled environment and are given a stimulus. All their reactions and the specifics of behavior are accurately measured to receive objective facts.
The main aspects of behaviorism
Watson’s followers and other scholars that were developing the behaviorism as a psychological school broaden the meaning of the behaviorism and its assumptions. All of the works that appeared being inspired by Watson’s writings are used to be called neobehaviorism. Behaviorism proposed by Watson is considered to be methodological behaviorism, and his article is a basis for all other principles.
Radical behaviorism was founded by an American scholar B. E. Skinner. It agrees with the statement about the purpose of psychology and claims that it is to predict the behavior and to control it. Skinner took into consideration the role of internal events in mind. He agreed that they should not be applied to explain the behavior but stated that such mental internal events need to be explained in the process of the behavior analyzing.
Difference between methodological and radical behaviorism
The most significant difference between the methodological and radical behaviorism refers to the role of environment in the behavior. The methodological view states that the mind of all human beings is a blank state. This means that all human beings are the same when they are coming in the world. The radical behaviorism has a different point of view on this problem and states that human beings are born with specific inner behaviors. Radical behaviorism takes into consideration the role of biological components and genes in the behavior.
After the series of experiments and observations, Skinner came to the conclusion that everybody behaves due to nature and character. This conclusion was made on the fact that the differences in the learning environment were followed by the differences in the behavior. The scholar stated that people naturally behave in a particular way to get a supportive reward. The main prompts of human behavior are hidden here as all of the people have a desire to experience a supportive attitude and perception. Consequently, they are developing only those personality traits that are positive.
According to the category of agreeableness, some positive traits are included in the Big Five: empathetic, understanding, positive thinker, and compassionate. Skinner believed that if the human being changed his negative traits, the environmental factor is changed first of all. The certain environment that surrounds the person significantly affects his or her personality. Based on this statement, Skinner believed that learning unconscious and not visible aspects of human beings is a waste of time as such aspects could not be objectively studied.
Skinner was a significant figure in the developing behaviorism as a school of psychology. His findings helped others scholars to discover the problem of human’s behavior establishing new suggestions and their support. The human behavior is still not fully discovered and explained by the scholars, and lots of its peculiarities need to be learned. This refers to the reasons for human’s behavior in different situations and the factors that most often influence the way human beings behave.