Behaviorism Theory Assignment Essay
A learning, or behavioral theory, in terms of human development, follows the view that the focus of psychology should be behavior, the way we act. A behaviorist places value on attributes that one can see and therefore study, as opposed to the invisible attributes, such as thinking, feeling, and other brain activity that occurs without one even knowing (Craig & Dunn, 2010, p. 14).Behaviorism Theory Assignment Essay There are three important modern behavior or learning theorists: Ivan Pavlov, John Watson, and B. F. Skinner. However, as stated by William Crain John Locke was the “Father of environmentalism and learning theory”, although Ivan Pavlov and B.F. Skinner were his “heirs” (Crain, 2011 p.3). To some, the behaviorist theories may seem limiting or incomprehensive, but …show more content…
Skinner deemed his subject an operant, on the environment, as opposed to simply responding to stimuli as set forth in Ivan Pavlov’s model of behavior.Behaviorism Theory Assignment Essay As humans, he believed that our response to stimuli is based on consequences of exposure in the past.
B. F. Skinner created a container referred to as a Skinner box that had a lever within reach of the animal, in this case a rat, so that as the rat was exploring the environment, the rat might grasp the lever, and either food or water would be dispensed. Because the outcome of hitting the lever was a positive one, the rat, Skinner showed, was likely to return and hit the lever more often. A key to high rates of response is to reward very quickly for the desired behavior. Skinner also recognized that a negative response, or the lack of a positive one, could stop certain behaviors as well (Crain, 2011). He further understood that some behaviors are difficult to teach some species; there are “biological constraints” to what can be taught. In a broad viewpoint, Skinner asserts that environments actually tie into the evolution of a species and dictates certain behaviors because the environment molds the survival constraints of the species (Crain, 2010 p. 196).Behaviorism Theory Assignment Essay