Behaviorist Approach

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  • Created by: Beverley
  • Created on: 17-04-13 17:44
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  • Behaviorist Approach
    • Research Methods
      • controlled laboratory experiments
        • Usually with animals
    • Case study
      • Watson and Rayner (1920)
        • Aim: whether a phobia could be learned
        • Method: showed him a white rat. if he tried to touch the rat a hammer would make a loud noise scaring Albert.
        • Results: when presented with the rat he was frightened and tried to get away
        • Conclusion: they successfully demonstrated behavior is learnt as  phobias could be conditioned
        • Evaluation: ethical issues, still showed evidence of a phobia after but less evident after a month. Methodological issue, just one case study, can't generalise
      • Little Albert
    • Basic Assumption
      • behaviour is learned from experience
      • nurture side
      • all behavior is learned through reinforvement or punishment
      • Law of effect
      • can generalize from animal to human behaviours
    • Classical Conditioning
      • Learning through assocciation
      • Ivan Pavlov
        • used naturally occuring reflexes in animals
          • e.g. Dog salivates when it sees food by ringing the bell with the food, the dog associates the bell with food
            • if there is a long time gap between the 2 stimuli association is not learned
            • if the bell is repeated rung without food the behaviour is extinguished
            • if the tone and volume of bell is changed they still salivate
    • Operant conditioning
      • behavior is learnt from consequences
        • consequences are rewards or punishments
          • behaviors that receive punishment are more likely to be repeated
      • Burrhas Frederic Skinner
        • Skinner Box
          • a hungry rat had to learn to press a lever to get food (the reward)
    • Evalutaion
      • Strengths
        • scientific and attempts to formulate laws of human behavior
        • animals used to study as they don't raise ethical issues
        • new behaviors can be learnt by people suffering from psychological problems  such as phobias
      • Limitations
        • denial of free will
          • sees humans as mechanistic and determined by reinforcement and punichment
        • minimises the effects of genes on behavior
          • rejects biological approach
        • behaviorists believe its easy to generalize between humans and animals
        • criticized that all learning results from consequences
        • ignores the importance of thinking and emotions
    • Application
      • observative behaviour
      • therapies eg. systematic desensitisation



A very detailed mind map on the Behaviourist Approach!

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