Free Essay

Understanding Reinforcement Psychology

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By tommy1588
Words 1642
Pages 7
Punishment is a component of operant conditioning used to decrease the probability of a behavior or response by causing a change in the environment (Singer, B.F. 1970). This essay will discuss aspects of punishment such as methodology, effectiveness and its effects on behavior. It will review the effectiveness of punishment methodology by studying the variables such as age, gender, socio-economic status and exposure to crime. In the direct context of speeding, contemporary punishment includes ‘positive punishment’ whereby giving the offender a fine and ‘negative punishment’ by suspension of their license. This essay will also assess the effectiveness of punishment.
Attempts to neutralize the issue of speeding include implementing warnings showing the severity and consequences of speeding. However, many young irresponsible drivers cannot relate to the seriousness by influence of their peers whom they value higher than authority figures of the law. Golias, J., Kanellaidis, G., & Zarifopoulos. K. (1995) shows that the major reason for speeding is the belief that speed limits are unreliable with a mean grade of 6.67 thus; this supports the idea that people do not perceive road authorities as an influential figure. At a younger age, influential figures are not ones that are necessarily responsible, but they appeal to them in anintrinsic way. In many cultures, speeding is acceptable; growing with this idea leads many drivers to have a habit of speeding (Blincoe, K.M., Jones, A.P., Sauerzapf, V., Haynes, R. 2006).
In the essay’s context, the aim of legal sanctions is for the subject to associate punishment with the unwanted behavior of speeding. (Stafford, M. C., & Warr, M. 1993) suggests although punishment may suppress actions temporarily; it may not completely abolish it. According to studies of operant conditioning’s studies of association and frequency; when individuals are punished for speeding, it is likely for their speeding nature to recur if punishment is not persistently reinforced. Furthermore, for consistency to take place, punishment needs to be in form of a variable ratio or interval, fixed variables and intervals only reinforces behavior when the individual already figured out the pattern and behaves accordingly when necessary.

VR: Variable Ratio FR: Fixed Ratio
VI: Variable Interval FI: Fixed Interval
However, from a vicarious learning perspective, learning occurs from observing others; education by traffic authorities for drivers starts approximately at age 15 through vicarious learning. Individuals who speed without experiencing accidents, may never understand the serious consequences. Witnessing accidents through reports have little effect on young individuals, rather, it seems effective once they themselves or someone close to them experience an accident. Furthermore, the initial step of ‘attention processing’ component of vicarious learning. At 15, an individual’s mind may not be mature enough to take driving seriously (Paus, T. 2005). Young drivers are prone to mixed media influences, peers and even role models. For vicarious learning to work effectively, education must be interesting enough for the individual to take educational rescores in consideration through to the ‘motivational processes’ stage where they will act accordingly as advised (Manz, C.C., & Sims Jr, H.P., 1981).
This leads onto the conquest of deterrence amongst speeding drivers. Vicarious learning is advocated through social reinforcement by punishment. Punishment today is easily avoided; individuals who have experienced crime have a likelihood of avoiding punishment. Which increases the chance of recurring criminal behavior, in every day society it is very likely for people to witness others avoiding crimes Stafford, (M.C., & Warr, M. 1993). Re-conceptualization of this issue sparked ideas such as reforming conspicuousness of law enforcement and increasing the severity of classical punishments.
Concealing law enforcement can counter act individuals that are learned in the ways of the law habits adapt to avoiding punishment such as slowing down where they know where a speed camera is or if they see a patrol car (Blincoe, K.M., Jones, A.P., Sauerzapf, V., & Haynes, R. 2006). If the cameras and police were hidden, drivers would more likely behave differently as they are unaware of their presence. Increasing the severity of fines or suspension would have a slight impact but along with many cases, once an individual adapts to the change, it becomes less effective; this can be seen in the rising cost of living. Limitations of this involve law sanctions needing to be fair on this issue as their punishments cannot be ridiculously severe otherwise it may raise issues with fairness (Singer. B.F. 1970).
Delivery of punishment is also important, assessing if punishment should be given directly as they are caught which would factor in intimidation elements, or by using delayed punishment through mail without facial confrontation. If indirect, delayed punishment through notice is used, legal sanctions may contemplate the most effective form of punishment given by evaluating the variables of the offender (M.C., & Warr, M. 1993).
A categorical variable is gender; punishment is the same for speeding between the genders variable. Lynn, R. (1993) finds generally, males and females value money fairly equally, however they value social images differently. Schwartz, S.H., Sturch, N., Van Der Kloot, & W.A. (2001) find that females value friendship and social connections where as men value social status and power. This could be suggested that punishment would be more effective if it diminishes values upheld by both genders. Therefore, presenting a different form of punishment for the different variables may be appropriate in order to maximize effectiveness. These ideas of values seem commonly exercised amongst peers especially around school age where social forms of punishment are given to each other for poor behavior around cohorts. These methods become so severe sometimes leading to the case of suicide. However, in the scale of legal sanctions, it would be an unethical practice to diminish one’s social values.
A continuous variable to the effectiveness of punishment is age group. Punishment has different effects on different age groups; studies show that younger generations aged 18-30 respond more effectively to direct and harsh punishment as desirable habits want to be exercised as early as possible. Whereas the older age groups respond better to vicarious learning as they are generally mature and understand better. Therefore, legal sanctions may change the method of punishment given to different age groups for better effectiveness (Kramer, J., Steffensmeier, D., Ulmer, & Jeffery. 1998). Therefore, a simple fine or suspension of license can be criticized for the lack of empathy driven to all recipients; ultimately it would mostly affect poorer people. Suggestions of punishing the older cohort with driving-educational commitments may be more effective in the variable of age. Punishment that would be more effective to the younger cohort needs to include vigorous and tedious commitments for them to associate punishment with the unwanted behavior of speeding.
Having the knowledge of what is most effective in different age groups and different gender assists the evaluation of the most effective form of punishment. However, it would be difficult for legal sanctions to collapse the social circle of a female or the social status of a male through contemporary punishment, as fines and license suspensions are common. To some, these forms of punishment seem to be mere a nuisances to the individuals caught speeding. The major challenge for legal sanctions is to find a compromise between the severity of punishment and speeding, whilst taking ethics in consideration. A criminal record and prison time for speeding, although possibly effective, it would be extravagantly excessive by destroying social statuses and friendships would just be unethical where as a fine, although reasonable, it may barely be effective as a large cohort persistently speed after this punishment.
In conclusion, there are many loopholes around legal sanctions in the contemporary form. Even punishing after the account of speeding is a problem as the act of speeding has already occurred. From gathered information, effective punishment is difficult to implement and can be easily outgrown and avoided. Like many things it is a race between new forms of effective punishment and new ways to avoid it. However, suggestions of focusing on improvement in driving education rather than improved methods of punishment could be a better way of keeping roads safe.
REFERENCE LIST 1. Blincoe, K.M., Jones, A.P., Sauerzapf, V., Haynes, R. (2006) Speeding drivers’ attitudes and perceptions of speed cameras in rural England. Accident Analysis and Prevention 38(1), 378-378. DOI: 10.1016/j.aap.2005.10.008

2. Golias, J., Kanellaidis, G., Zarifopoulos. K. (1995), A survey of drivers’ attitudes towards speed limit violations. Journal of Safety Research 26(1), 31-40 DOI: 00224375(94)00025

3. Kramer, J., Steffensmeier, D., Ulmer, Jeffery. (1998), The interaction of race, gender, and age in criminal sentencing: The punishment of being young, black, and male. Journal of Criminology 36(4), 763 – 789 DOI: 10.1111/j.1745-9125.1998.tb01265.x

4. Lynn, R. (1993), Sex differences in competitiveness and valuation of money in twenty centuries. The Journal of Social Psychology 133(4), 507-511 DOI: 10.1080/00224545.1993.9712175

5. Manz, C.C., Sims Jr, H.P. (1981), Vicarious learning: The influence of modeling on organizational behavior. The Academy of Management Review 6(1), 105-113. DOI: http://www.jstor.org/stable/257144

6. Paus, T. (2005), Mapping brain maturation and cognitive development during adolescence. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 9(2). 60-67

7. Schwartz, S.H., Sturch, N., Van Der Kloot, W.A. (2001), Meanings of basic values for women and men: A cross-cultural analysis. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 28(16), 16-27 DOI: 10.1016/j.tics.2004.12.008

8. Singer, B.F. (1970), Psychological studies of punishment. California Law Review 58(2) 405-443 DOI: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3479665

9. Stafford, M.C., Warr, M. (1993). A reconceptualization of general and specific deterrence. Journal of Research in Crime Delinquency 30(1), 123-133. DOI: 10.1177/0022427893030002001

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

The Evolution of Psychology

...THE EVOLUTION OF PSYCHOLOGY ASPECTS OF PSYCHOLOGY SSCI206 – 1204A UNIT 1 INDIVIDUAL PROJECT Abstract Understanding how psychology has evolved since its origin is crucial in the overall understanding of the entire subject. There are many perspectives to look at when dealing with psychology. Three of these perspectives will be discussed in this paper; behaviorism, humanistic, and psychodynamic. Although these perspectives are different, there are some similarities between the three. This paper will go more in depth with these three perspectives and explain some of the similarities and differences between each. The Evolution of Psychology The Behaviorism perspective of psychology involves rewards or punishments that are associated with specific behaviors. (Editorial Board, 2011). Behaviorism has had a major influence on psychology. Animal training and parenting techniques stem from this perspective. Today, psychology pays more attention to inner emotions and though in people. There are four methods that include negative reinforcement, positive reinforcement, positive punishment, and negative punishment. The first, negative reinforcement is strengthening a particular behavior by stopping it or avoiding it altogether. This means taking away something undesirable in order to influence behavior. A parent could use this technique to get their child to clean their room. Depending on the age of the child, the parent could let their child skip naptime once for cleaning......

Words: 954 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Shaping and Chaining, Reinforcement Schedules and One-Trial Learning

...Shaping and Chaining, Reinforcement Schedules and One-Trial Learning Option 2:Psychology Literature Review Psych 635 06/15/2015 Environmental and Evolutionary Teaching new tasks to organisms can be a difficult process for any individual to undertake. Psychologists, parents, teachers, and a wealth of other individuals attempt to teach new tasks through a variety of methods such as by shaping the new desired task, through reinforcement of it, or even through one-trail learning. The different methods that are used each have their benefits depending on what a person is attempting to teach and can be better suited for different tasks dependent on what the tasks are. The paper is going to cover the concepts of shaping and chaining, reinforcement schedules, and one-trial learning as well as current understanding of application of these concepts in order to gain a better understanding into learning techniques and teaching new tasks. Shaping and Chaining Shaping and chaining both are linked together in a way that allows the processes to be broken down into steps that allow for learning or changes in behaviors. Shaping and chaining are similar processes that allow for a change in a person or organisms behavior by allowing for small changes in behaviors or responses. In shaping an existing response or behavior is changed gradually over time through trials that direct the response toward a targeted behavior through the rewarding of segments of behavior (Schunk, 2012). In......

Words: 1234 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

Psychology for Management

...impact on their behavior, which he categorize as reinforcers or punishments. Therefore, Operant Conditioning is a tool that can influence a person’s increasing or decrease his or her behavior by the consequences of their behavior. Operant conditioning will be illustrated by the behavior of the students when removing negative reinforcement or punishment or adding positive reinforcement or punishment (Robins et al, 2013). In this paragraph, the student’s behavior will be explained using Negative Reinforcement with the illustration of their behavior being increased frequently, towards the termination of the unfavorable consequence, which is, not having the privileges. From the question, the students attended to class early, which is their behavior, in order to avoid the undesired privileges that are associated with their late attendance. Therefore, the students displayed negative reinforcement when, their attendance was increased, and the unpleasant stimulus, ceased or terminated. The students can now enjoy the good and pleasant privileges associated with their increased occurring attendance or behavior. According to Skinner, negative reinforcement is a...

Words: 4555 - Pages: 19

Premium Essay

Remix

...Danilo Obando 06/18/2013 PSY 1012 Introduction of Psychology Chapter 6 Conditioning and Learning In the text book Introduction of Psychology the chapter that I will be writing about would be on chapter 6 Conditioning and Learning. Conditioning and learning in the world of psychology has many interested theories about behaviors. Learning is a permanent change in behavior due to experience and it starts from our childhood stage in our lives. There are two types of learning, which is associative and cognitive behavior. Associative learning is a simple type of learning that affects many aspects of daily life. Cognitive learning involves making use of information rich higher mental process. In associative learning there are many practices and theories of associative learning such as reinforcements which is any events that will increase a response. Classical conditioning is an antecedent stimulus that doesn’t produce a response is linked with one that does. Another one would be operant learning is based on the consequences of responding. These are part of associative learning and have happened in many times in a human being life, including mine. At first this theory was experimented by a scientist from Russia Ivan Pavlov. He began with animals and observing there behaviors. What he has discovered for example if he is studying a dog, he rings a bell being a neutral stimulus the dog would not response. Immediately after, he......

Words: 726 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Learning and Behavior

...The field of psychology has different types of methods that are used in order to control, change, or alter behavior. There is no one specific method is that universally agreed upon or is better than another. Rather, the method used depends upon the intended outcome, and the reason for some type of conditioning or punishment. Operant conditioning is one type of method used by psychologist. In addition, there is positive punishment, negative punishment, positive reinforcement, and negative reinforcement. Operant conditioning is a method of learning that occurs through a system of rewards and punishments for a behavior. With this type of conditioning, there is an association between the behavior and the consequence for the behavior. This was created by B.F. Skinner, who was a behaviorist and believed that a person’s internal thoughts and motivations can be used to explain a person’s behavior. Reinforcement is a key concept in operant conditioning. Specifically, the two types of reinforcers are positive, in which favorable events or outcomes are given after a behavior, and negative reinforcers which involve the removal of an unfavorable event or outcome after a behavior. An example of operant conditioning is when a child complete their school work and is rewarded by the teacher and receives either praise or some type of physical reward, such as candy. The one ethical concern that may arise from this method is that a child who knows that they will not be able to finish their......

Words: 867 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Behaviorism Theory

...In its most general sense, Behaviorism, also known as behavioral psychology, is a theory of learning developing as a result of the propositions and beliefs shared by a group of people who has influenced educators’ view of learning. The term behavioral psychology refers to a psychological approach which principally concerned with stimulus-response activities and emphasizes the role of environmental factors in a learning process, to the exclusion of own free will. There is a tenet of behavioral psychology that “only observable, measurable, an outward behavior is worth investigating” (Bush, 2006, p. 14). Historically speaking, behaviorism was originated in the 1880s and develops gradually in the twentieth-first century and beyond. Skinner and...

Words: 1083 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Psy310

...Abstract Behavioral psychology also known as behaviorism in focusing on observable behaviors, which behaviorists uses key concepts of conditioning, punishment, and reinforcement. John B. Watson and B. F. Skinner’s approach on behaviorism exhibited behavioral psychology as the model of formal disciplinary. On the other hand, Edward C. Tolman’s approach on behavioral learning subsidized to behavioral psychology. Although Watson, Skinner, and Tolman’s approaches were different in describing and explaining their theoretical approach, Watson, Skinner, and Tolman contributed their own theories proven to impact a part of psychology in influencing the advancement of modern day psychology in understanding behavior and human learning.   Perspectives John B. Watson (1878-1958) was born in a small city (Travelers Rest) in Greenville County of South Carolina to Emma Watson and Pickens Butler. Watson was an American psychologist who founded the psychological school of behaviorism and the first to advocate a behavioral approach. Watson believed that one could benefit a full understanding of behavior by learning and modifying the environment in which people function and control as well as he thought that it was feasible and probable to produce any desired type of behavior by controlling a person’s environment (Feldman, 2010). According to Watson, psychology should be the science of observable behavior in which he treated mental events outside the province of a scientific psychology.......

Words: 2156 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

A Token Economy Is an Intensive.

...frameworks describing how information is absorbed, processed, and retained during learning. Cognitive, emotional, and environmental influences, as well as prior experience, all play a part in how understanding, or a world view, is acquired or changed and knowledge and skills retained. 1. Behaviorism theory Behaviorism (or behaviourism) is a systematic approach to the understanding of human and animal behavior. Behaviorism combines elements of philosophy, methodology, and psychological theory. It emerged in the early twentieth century as a reaction to depth psychology and other traditional forms of psychology, which often had difficulty making predictions that could be tested experimentally It assumes that the behavior of a human or animal is a consequence of that individual's history, including especially reinforcement and punishment, together with the individual's current motivational state and controlling stimuli. Thus, although behaviorists generally accept the important role of inheritance in determining behavior, they focus primarily on environmental factors. 2. Cognitivism theory Cognitivists argued that the way people think impacts their behavior and therefore cannot be a behavior in and of itself. Cognitivists later argued that thinking is so essential to psychology that the study of thinking should become its own field. However, cognitivists typically presuppose a specific form of mental activity, of the kind advanced by computationalism. Cognitive......

Words: 3547 - Pages: 15

Premium Essay

With Reference to Learning Theories, Assess the Contribution of Educational Psychology in Teaching and Learning.

...Learning theories has been a subject of great interest in psychology ,this makes it fundamental to teaching and learning.The essay will assess contributions of educational psychology with reference to learning theories in teaching and learning .Key terms will be discussed in the next paragraph .The conclusion shall synthesize learning theories and the contribution of educational psychology and their educational implications . https://en.m.wikipedia.org / learning theories are conceptual frameworks describing how information is absorbed, processed and retained during learning .That is learning theories helps to predict and explain relationship between learning conditions and the learning outcomes. Zindi,Peresuh and Mpofu,(1997) says “educational psychology is knowledge gained from psychology and applied to activities of the classroom.” Santrock (2011) deals with human behavior and its application in education .According to the above two definitions educational psychology refers to the provision to the teachers with theories which help them to be flexible and adaptable to different situations which can happen in the teaching and learning at primary and secondary level. Educational psychology contributes a lot in the teaching and learning. It helps the teacher in selecting materials suitable for learners and suitable teaching methodologies. When the teacher is well versed with theories, he or she find how to explain, describe and control behavior. In the classroom, when the......

Words: 1887 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Foundations of Psychology

...Foundations of Psychology John Stafford University of Phoenix PSY/300 Abstract There are several major approaches to psychological study with several other disciplines falling under these primary approaches. Ranging from psychodynamic to evolutionary perspectives, and rarely sharing a unified paradigm, psychology has advanced since the late 1800s to be a wide-ranging field of human study. Foundations of Psychology The study of psychology found roots in philosophy. However, Wilhelm Wundt, who founded the first psychological laboratory, led the recognition of psychology as a science in 1879. In the mid-to-late 1940s standards were put into place for the doctoral programs designed to place emphasis on a general knowledge of psychology. This knowledge included the history of psychology, and modern disciplines of physiological, comparative, developmental, and social psychology. Students were also required to gain an understanding of research methods, advanced statistics, and psychological scaling (Zlotlow, Peterson, & Nelson, 2011). Behavioral Foundations of Psychology The major topics covered in behavioral psychology include evolution, heredity, and adaptation and learning, mating habits, parenting behaviors, and primate study. Behavioral psychology primarily focuses on the study of animal behavior to obtain a deeper understanding of human behavior. Studies like Ivan Pavlov’s (1849-1936) research on classical conditioning, also referred to as “Pavlov’s Dogs,”......

Words: 912 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Operant Conditioning Paper

...Operant Conditioning Georgia University of Phoenix PSY/390 April 18th, 2011 Operant Conditioning The operant conditioning is a fundamental theory in psychology and is also known as instrumental conditioning. This theory emphasizes the use of consequences to alter certain occurrences and forms of behavior. Furthermore, learning is the outcome of rewards and punishments used as consequences for specific behaviors. B. F. Skinner is one of the most famous behaviorists who initiated the operant conditioning theory, and until today, most theorists refer to it as the “ Skinnerian Conditioning” to further their studies. Skinner established his theory from Thorndike’s earlier work and demonstrates that the most efficient way to understand behavior is by observing the causes of people’s actions, based on the effect of reinforcement or punishments. This paper will discuss the theory of the operant conditioning by explaining the significant actions that stimulates people’s behavior. Theory of Operant Conditioning Skinner did not consider people inner thoughts or intentions to be responsible for the way their behavior is shaped. Instead, he believed that external factors are most likely to be accountable for the way humans behave in their environment. The reason he uses the term operant, is to refer to certain behaviors that operate within the environment and initiate consequences. According to Skinner,” the emphasis is on behavior and its consequences, and...

Words: 1299 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Phobias and Addictions

...Addictions and Phobias Phobias and addictions are difficult problems to deal with, and unfortunately many people are affected by them. While they are separate problems, many times you will find people who are suffering from both problems. This can happen because many times a person with an addiction issue may have a phobia that they are unaware of. In order to better understand why phobias and addictions develop, a better understanding of operant and classical conditioning is needed. When a person learns to react to the stimulus in their environment; that is classical conditioning. When a person has a reaction to either a reward or punishment; that is operant conditioning. The easiest way to distinguish the two types of conditioning is look at the nature of the response a person has towards a stimulus. This paper will examine how phobias develop as a result of classical conditioning, and how addictions develop as a result of operant conditioning. (Kowalski & Westen, 2009) An addiction is the repeated use of a substance or activity that becomes a compulsion and has a negative effect on a person’s ability to function normally. Many times a person knows that the behavior they are doing is very negative and is having an adverse effect on their life, but this will not stop them from engaging in the activity. Many addictions begin as a result of someone engaging in an activity like drinking, doing drugs or gambling. This activity may be enjoyable for the person and give them......

Words: 1229 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Nursing

...Social Psychology 11.30am – 1.00pm Throughout this essay I am going to discuss main aims and procedures of psychology from academic perspective, what psychology is, the founding fathers of psychology, main issues concerning psychologist, different branches of psychology and why psychology is form of science. The purposes of psychology is focusing on research and theories and understanding psychological area. While some psychologists work on applied psychology to gain knowledge. Psychologist involved in research applies psychology during some point in their career. Clinical psychology is among various principles of psychology aims at developing knowledge and research method which they continue to build up and treat with psychological issues. Psychology is the science discipline to understand behaviours of a person. The goal is to understand people by establishing general principles and researching cases. The four goals of psychology are description, explanation, prediction and influence. Description is identifying behaviours. Explanation is the reason for mental behaviour. Prediction is offering hypothesis about sets of conditions produces manner of behaving and mental processes. Influence is using the results of research to solve practical problems that involves behaviour. The specialised meanings in psychology are behaviourism, functionalism, individualism, ethnocentrism, introspection and pragmatism. Determinism is the argument that the person doesn’t......

Words: 2531 - Pages: 11

Premium Essay

Cognitive Theorists

...Cognitive Theorist PSY/390 Elizabeth Schnobrich September 15, 2014 The cognitive theory is an approach to psychology that attempts to explain human behavior by understanding the thought process. In humans, it is assumed that thoughts are the primary determinants of emotions and behavior. The cognitive theory mainly rejects behaviorism because it reduces complex human behavior to simple cause and effect. However, there has been a trend going around the past decade or so that leans towards merging the two into what is known as cognitive behavioral theory. This allows therapists to use more techniques to help achieve goals. One cognitive theorist who is well known throughout psychology is Edward C Tolman. Edward C Tolman was a very influential theorist who introduced many new concepts and vocabulary into the field of psychology. Before psychology, Edward C Tolman studied engineering. He spent a majority of his career at Berkeley and eventually earned his Ph.D. at Harvard. He enjoyed working with his research students and confesses that he received many of his ideas from the students themselves. Behaviorist said that psychology should study observable behavior and that nothing happens between stimulus and response. Basically, there are no cognitive processes that take place. Edward Tolman challenged these behaviorist by proposing that people and animals are active information processes and not passive learners as suggested. “Tolman believed individuals do more than......

Words: 735 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Learning

...Learning Anna Parks PSY/390 8-29-14 Professor Pavone Learning Learning is one of the most important and studied aspects in modern psychology. In order for one to understand learning, one must also understand behavior. Theorists use classical and instrumental conditioning to explain the changes in behavior. Learning and cognition are intertwined and both need to be present to understand learning. With a proper understanding of behavior and cognition, one can understand learning. Learning is most commonly defined as gaining knowledge, comprehension, or mastery through experience or study (Olson & Hergenhahn, 2009). However, psychologists prefer a different definition. In psychology, learning is defined as the “relatively permanent change in behavior that is brought about by experience” (McGraw Hill, 2011, p. 112). This change in behavior cannot occur because of illness, injury, maturation, or chemical substances. Psychology is a behavioral science; therefore an observable and measurable subject is required. In psychology, the subject studied is behavior. Researchers make inferences regarding the learning process based upon the observable behavior. Researchers study what is expressed through behavior, however, behavior may not always be from learning. B.F. Skinner believed that behavioral changes were learning whereas other theorists believed that behavioral changes were the result of teaching (Olson & Hergenhahn, 2009). Except for Skinner and his followers, theorists...

Words: 878 - Pages: 4