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Behavioural psychologists believe that learning is the most important cause of behaviour and most of their studies are carried out on animals - these are easier, cheaper and less complex to use than humans.

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Introduction

Behavioural psychologists believe that learning is the most important cause of behaviour and most of their studies are carried out on animals - these are easier, cheaper and less complex to use than humans. The Behaviourist Approach is also sometimes referred to as the Stimulus Response theory - (S-R theory). The Stimulus could be food and the response could be salivation. This approach is also sometimes known as Behaviourism. There are three main areas concerned in the Behaviourist approach. Firstly, Classical Conditioning, Whereby Ivan Pavlov was the main Behaviourist, Secondly, Operant Conditioning, whereby Burrhus Frederic Skinner (1904-1990) was the focal Behaviourist and thirdly Social Learning Theory whereby Albert Bandura was the major Behaviourist. Classical Conditioning. Under Pavlov in Classical Conditioning an experiment was conducted in the 1900's, with the use of several dogs. Pavlov noted that when Food, which was an unconditioned Stimulus (UCS), was introduced, to the dogs. He found that this elicited an unconditioned response (UCR), Salivation. Pavlov then introduced a bell at the same time as the food (both were UCS') which also elicited Salivation (UCR). Pavlov repeated these trials ten times. He then introduced the bell (CS) ...read more.

Middle

In order to obtain the food the animal had to press the lever. The animal would accidentally press the lever as it moved around the box. Skinner noted the number of trials before the animal pressed the lever automatically. Behaviour, which is unpleasant, will not be repeated and behaviour that is pleasant will be repeated. This is because pleasant consequences will strengthen through either positive or negative reinforcement and unpleasant consequences will weaken behaviour through punishment. There are many different types of reinforces which include the following- Primary reinforcers - These types of reinforcers are those that satisfy basic needs. For example, hunger and thirst. Secondary Reinforcers - Those those become associated with primary reinforcers such as the food tray in 'Skinners box'. Negative reinforcers - There are two types of negative reinforcement. Escape learning, which is where the animal learns to stop the unpleasantness by pressing the lever. There is also Avoidance learning, which is where the rat avoids the shock by jumping over a barrier when a buzzer is sounded, thus avoiding the shock. In this experiment the animal used escape learning as Skinner was sending electric shocks through the box and to avoid the shock the animal had to press the lever. ...read more.

Conclusion

* Explain to the child why the behaviour is unacceptable. * Adults should take some of the responsibility for why the child is naughty. E.g., Not giving the child enough attention. In the treatment of phobias there are many systematic Desensitations - 1) Extinguishing - the patient must be exposed to the fear. 2) Relaxation - the patient discusses the least most feared thing about the phobia with the therapist. The patient is then helped to relax then is taken through the least fear and up to actually facing the actual fear. (This is a long process). 3) Implosion therapy and flooding - This involves the phobic imagining their phobia. Flooding is when the phobic is faced with their fear head on. E.g.. A spider is placed on their arm. 4) Aversion therapy - This is to extinguish a particular behaviour from happening, e g an alcoholic may be given a drug, which makes them nauseous when they consume alcohol. Therefore eventually making them stop drinking. Other types of therapy include- Latent Learning - When learning takes place but not necessarily with a reward. Insight Learning - This occurs when a relationship is seen between two things which have not been previously associated. Dawn-Aleah Andrew. 7/1/03 The Behaviourist Approach. Note Form. 1 ...read more.

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