behaviourist theories


behaviourist theories

Behaviourist theories
Behaviorist learning theory is a psychology‐grounded pedagogical line of thought, based on the idea that behavior can be researched scientifically without consideration of cognitive states. The primary hypothesis is that learning is influenced solely by physical variables such as environmental or material reinforcement. By dismissing the influence of mental variables, behaviorist theories propose that free will is an illusion and that responses can be determined and conditioned. Key figures essential to the development of these theories include Ivan Pavlov, John B. Watson and B. F. Skinner.
Utsunomiya University, Japan

Prior to the introduction of behavioral science, the field of psychology consisted of the study of states of mind and mental processes. There are four historical building blocks of behaviorism: classical conditioning as presented by Pavlov, Thorndike’s law of effect, Watson’s experiments with human conditioning, and Skinner’s conceptualization of operant conditioning.
Behaviorism is widely used to refer to the philosophy of a science of behavior. There are various forms of behaviorism: structuralism, behaviorism that uses cognition as causal factors (e.g., cognitive behavior modification), social learning theory, in addition to methodological behaviorism and radical behaviorism. In his text, About Behaviorism (Skinner, 1974 ), B. F. Skinner wrote: “Behaviorism is not the science of human behavior, it is the philosophy of that science” (Cooper, Heron, & Heward, 2007 ).

Only 8% of the articles were critical towards the behaviourist tradition.
40% of the articles referred uncritically to the behaviouristic epistemology.