Behaviorism and Learning

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Behaviorism and Learning

Behaviorism and Learning

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Introduction

Behaviorists argue that human behavior is learned hence the probability that human behavior can be unlearned, and new behavior can be learned is real. Behaviorist came to be as a counter for mentalists who emphasized on experimenting and understanding the mind. Behaviorists argue that the mind cannot be entirely tested to provide the true picture of learning. Instead, actions and reactions that people exhibit can be essential learning points about behavior. Behaviorist argued that what occurs in mind is non-observable hence focus should be on what is observable. Such perception led to the rise of behaviorism.

Body

Behaviorism is a hypothesis of learning based on the belief that behavior is acquired through conditioning. The responses that people demonstrate towards a certain environment shape his behavior. Behaviorism arose in early 20th century as a rejection of the analysis of the conscious and the unconscious mind. Ivan Pavlov is the earliest psychologists associated with the theory of behaviorism. Ivan discovered that behaviors could be learned through conditions association. Ivan conducted an experiment involving the digestive system of dogs to prove his theory.

However, it is American psychologist John Watson who is recognized as the advocate of behaviorism. Watson introduce the theory of behaviorism in 1913 in the publication “psychology as the behaviorist views it” who later went ahead to state that any person has the potential to receive training and expertise in any field, regardless of underlying factors such as genetic background, personal traits and thoughts. Other psychologists such as Skinner came later and supported the theory of behaviorism (Woollard, 2010).

According to behaviorist theories, there…...

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