the BA is nomothetic as it aims to make general laws of behaviour, this links to the key methodology used which are LABORATORY EXPERIMENTS and ANIMAL LEARNING STUDIES.
Lab exp provide the BA with an objective and scientific approach to understanding behaviour. They involve the experimenter manipulating the IV in order to see it's effect on the DV. Bor example in Bandura's Bobo Doll study the IV was whethere the adult was aggressive or not towards to bobo doll and the DV was the aggressive behaviour shown in the children
Strength and Weaknesses of LAB
One strength of a Lab Exp is that the extraneous varible can be controlled, and due to the use of standardised instructions and procudures, lab exp can be replicated. For example due to the high levels of control Banduras study can be repearted to check the validity of the findings. However a weakness of lab exp is that they take place in artifical environments so lack ecological validitiy. therefore banduras findings may not apply to everyday life. A further weakness is that demand characteristics may occur. For example the children in the bobo doll experiment mau have felt that they were suppose to hit the bobo doll
Animal learning studies
A second method used by the BA is the use of Animal Learning Studies. Behaviourosts believe animals and humans only differ qualitatively therefore animal research can be applied to help us understand human behaviour. Animal learning studies involve conducting experiments on animals under contolled conditions. Example of animal learning studies include pavlovs study on dogs which led to classical conditioning and Skinners research on rats which lead to opertant conditioning.
Strengths and weakness on Animal learning studies
one strength is that the findings of ALS have been applied successfully to humans. for example the principles of CC have been applied to SD to help treat phobias. operant conditioning has also been used within education to help improve behaviour through the use to star charts and merits. a further strength is that it is easier to conduct research on animals as there are no demand characteristics. however a weakness is that due to the complexity of human behaviour, not all research on animals may be applicable to humans. furthermore there are guidelines in place to protect animals therefore ethical issues may get in the way of conducting ALS