Psych 150 - Lecture 16 - 3-12-2007

Psych 150 - Lecture 16 - 3-12-2007 - PSYCHOLOGY 150...

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Professor Ozlem Ayduk 3/12/07 Lecture 16 ASUC Lecture Notes Online (formerly Black Lightning) is the only authorized note-taking service at UC Berkeley. Please do not share, copy or illegally distribute these notes. Our non-profit, student-run program depends on your individual subscription for its continued existence. These notes are copyrighted by the University of California and are for your personal use only. Sharing or copying these notes is illegal and could end note taking for this course LECTURE Behaviorism and Learning Theory. Now we move to a new section of the class focusing on this. Imagine two people: Lisa and Cindy. Lisa. Lisa has loved pastel colors since she was 8 when she had a surprise birthday party where there were pale pink, green and violet decorations. Cindy. Cindy works in the library where she is well liked and is very good at negotiating differences among people. She got a promotion and grows more and more enthusiastic about her work. We can use behaviorism to explain Lisa and Cindy. The two main schools of thought in behaviorism are classical conditioning, associated with Pavlov, and operant conditioning, which is associated with B.F. Skinner. A third, lesser known, school is stimulus-response theory. Key Assumptions. Learning theory, or behaviorism, has certain key assumptions. The first is that most behavior is learned; we are born with blank slates and we learn our behaviors after we are born. Watson, a famous early behaviorist, said that if you gave him a dozen healthy infants, he could train them to become anything he wanted using principles of learning theory. This is a radical view. It contradicts the idea that there are genetically based traits -- that we are born with predispositions. It contradicts Freud’s claim that we all have sex and aggressive instincts that we are born with and must deal with. The second big assumption is that you cannot study what you cannot observe. So you can only study what is observable. You cannot observe someone’s thoughts, or their interpretation of the situation. You cannot observe anything mental. So you can only study behavior and it must be done in an objective and rigorous manner. You must be able to quantify, measure, and observe something to study it. This is very incompatible with psychodynamic theory. Third, psychology is the science of behavior, not the study of the mind. You don’t need to understand the mind to explain behavior; they rejected internal explanations of behavior. All causes of behavior are external and a function of the situation. If you change the situation, whether micro or macro, you change behavior and personality. Watson said you could make people whatever you wish. The emphasis of therapy should be to change behavior and not understand the mind or psyche or anything else that is non- observable. Behaviorism deletes the person as an object of study; it focuses on behavior and the situation. Classical Conditioning.
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This note was uploaded on 04/02/2008 for the course PSYCH 150 taught by Professor Ayduk during the Spring '07 term at University of California, Berkeley.

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Psych 150 - Lecture 16 - 3-12-2007 - PSYCHOLOGY 150...

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