• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
Page
  1. 1
    1
  2. 2
    2
  3. 3
    3
  4. 4
    4
  5. 5
    5
  6. 6
    6
  7. 7
    7
  8. 8
    8
  9. 9
    9
  10. 10
    10
  11. 11
    11
  12. 12
    12

"Explain Concepts from the Behaviourist perspective and evaluate strengths and limitations of this perspective in relation to understanding and caring for patients"

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

200173340 HECS 1021 Introduction to Psychology "Explain Concepts from the Behaviourist perspective and evaluate strengths and limitations of this perspective in relation to understanding and caring for patients" 17/01/2006 Explain Concepts from the Behaviourist perspective and evaluate strengths and limitations of this perspective in relation to understanding and caring for patients. The aim of this essay is to highlight the importance of behavioural psychology in healthcare and consider how healthcare professionals can employ behaviourist techniques to help their clients. Cardwell (2000 page 202) describes psychology as the "scientific study of mind and behaviour". From this definition it may not seem obvious as to why psychology is important in healthcare; however the World Health Organisation defines health as "a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity" (WHO 1946 cited in Banyard 2002). It is clear from this definition that healthcare professionals should not only seek to ensure that their clients have a healthy body, but that they should also have a healthy mind and engage in healthy behaviour and it is for this reason every healthcare professional should have a good understanding of psychology and how psychology can be used to help clients. This essay will firstly give a brief introduction to the behaviourist perspective, then move on to describe how classical and operant conditioning can explain the formation of behaviour and finally move on to examine the classical and operant conditioning theories that can be used by healthcare professionals to help their clients. ...read more.

Middle

Every healthcare professional should be aware that they can help to change their client's behaviour through the way they respond towards their behaviour and so tailor their responses to reward and therefore promote positive health behaviour and disregard negative health behaviour. This is especially true in children because behavioural psychologists argue that from a very young age children learn all their voluntary behaviour through operant conditioning and healthcare professionals can use this to mould their behaviour by reinforcing and rewarding the good health behaviour whilst ignoring the bad health behaviour. Behaviour therapies are based on the principles of classical conditioning and include systematic desensitization, implosion therapy and aversion therapy. Systematic desensitization attempts to reduce anxiety towards a feared object by first training the client to relax and then slowly exposing them to situations involving the feared object that increase with intensity over time (Hayes 1988). The hope is that the client will learn to relax in situations where the feared object is present and therefore their levels of anxiety will decrease to a point where the object no longer produces a fear response (Malim 1992). Systematic desensitization was first demonstrated in 1924 when a behavioural psychologist named Jones successfully used the process of classical conditioning to remove a 2 year olds fear of rabbits (Gross 1993). Jones (1924 cited in Gross 1993) began by placing a cage with a rabbit inside in front of the little boy while he ate his lunch. Gradually Jones was able to move the cage closer to the little boy and eventually after about 40 sessions the rabbit sat on the little boy's lap while he ate his lunch (Gross 1993). ...read more.

Conclusion

Token economy has also been used with schizophrenics and autistic children with good success but it proves to be expensive and often the encouraged behaviour will cease once the treatment stops. To conclude, behaviourism not only provides answers to why certain behaviours are formed but also gives healthcare professionals methods to help their clients modify and adapt their behaviour. It is a scientific approach that comes with all the benefits and indeed all the problems of a scientific perspective. To overcome the weaknesses in behaviourism healthcare professionals should seek to use an eclectic approach when treating their clients, for example using the humanistic approach of individuality and free will to overcome the reductionist and deterministic approach of behaviourism. Word count - 2,448 Reference list Aitken, V. (1996) Behavioural Sciences for Health Professionals. London: W.B. Saunders. Banyard, P. (2002) Health (Psychology in Practice). London: Hodder and Stoughton. Cardwell, M (2000) the Complete A to Z Psychology Handbook. 2nd Edition. London: Hodder and Stoughton. Cave, S. (1999) Therapeutic Approaches in Psychology. London; New York: Routledge. Davenport, G.C. (1994) an Introduction to Child Development. 2nd Edition. London: Colins Educational. Gross, R.D. (1992) Psychology: the Science of Mind and Behaviour. 2nd Edition. London: Hodder and Stoughton. Hayes, N. (1988) a First Course in Psychology. Walton-on-Thames: Nelson. Malim, T. (1992) Perspectives in Psychology. Basingstoke, Hampshire: Macmillan. Roth, I. (1990) The Open University's Introduction to Psychology. Volume one. Hove: Erlbaum, in association with the Open University. Rungapadiachy, D.M. (1999) Interpersonal communication and psychology for health care professionals: theory and practice. Oxford: Butterworth- Heinemann. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Developmental Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Developmental Psychology essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Contrast Principles of Classical and Operant Conditioning

    3 star(s)

    al were able to condition an animal to avoid a particular food associated with a painful outcome and so the animal learnt to avoid that food because of it's conditioned aversion response to it's smell or taste. Taste aversion learning has caused problems for Pavlovian conditioning because classical assumes that

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Behaviourist Perspective

    3 star(s)

    Varying rein forcers The five major schedules can be used by: - * Continuous- this is reinforcement every time; it extinguishes the behaviour very quickly. * Fixed ratio- regular, for example every 2nd, 4th, 6th, 8th, time. * Variable ratio- constantly altered.

  1. Review of Behaviourism

    developed in describing or explaining behaviour, then either # these terms or concepts should be eliminated and replaced by behavioural terms or # they can and should be translated or paraphrased into behavioural concepts. This theory within philosophy about the meaning or semantics of mental terms or concepts is called "Analytical" behaviourism.

  2. The Behaviourist Approach To the Understanding of Human Behaviour

    Watson would strike a steel bar, this frightened Albert and made him cry and the fear of the sound was then transferred to the rat. After seven stimulations Albert was not only afraid of white rats but he had also developed a fear to white rabbits, cotton wool, a fur coat, the experimenter's white hair and also Father Christmas.

  1. c hallenging a client to change

    Restoration of balance is self-regulating. The need is satisfied. The process starts again. Incomplete gestalts are called unfinished business The emphasis of Gestalt counselling is on: - Change through activity - The central meaning of present experience - The importance of fantasy and creative experimentation, particularly using the right, creative

  2. Psychological theories can support our understanding of client needs. Discuss the strengths and weaknesses ...

    These children and young people were expected to work from a young age and/or help with life at home. Very few went to school and if they were at school, it would be out of hours and it was not considered important.

  1. Free essay

    Unmasking Anxiety with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

    L-tryptophan is an amino acid that crosses into the brain quickly and turns into serotonin. The study was published in the Archives of General Psychiatry (49). In order to most effectively and quickly treat an anxiety disorder, it is helpful for both a patient and their physician to pinpoint the type of anxiety that the individual experiences.

  2. A small scale investigation into children's understanding of scientific concepts.

    The attractive features of this research lied in its potential to include aspects from the two main theories proposed by Piaget and Vygotsky and their followers. The outcome prediction was that through peer collaboration and scaffolding the children would develop a better understanding of scientific concepts.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work