As a result psychologists eventually used operationism more extensively than

As a result psychologists eventually used

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As a result, psychologists eventually used operationism more extensively than physicists.
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The generation of neobehaviorists that came in the late 1920s and 1930s, including B.F. Skinner , incorporated operationism in their approach to psychology. Bridgman at 79, terminally ill, completed the index to a seven-volume edition of his collected writings. o He mailed it to the publisher and then shot himself ; stated he had feared that if he waited any longer, he would become incapacitated and unable to do it himself. Edward Chace Tolman (1886-1959) Switched from engineering to psychology and received his PhD from Harvard in 1915. o In 1912, studied in Germany with Kurt Koffka. o In his last year of grad school, he became acquainted with Watson’s new behaviorism which he said came as a, “tremendous stimulus and relief” o In 1918 he took a position at the U. of California at Berkeley where he taught comparative psychology and conducted research on learning in rats. Comparative Psychology : the scientific study of the behavior and mental processes of non- human animals, especially as these relate to the phylogenetic history, adaptive significance, and development of behavior. o During WW2 , Tolman served with the Office of Strategic Services (forerunner of the CIA) and in the 50’s helped lead faculty opposition to the new California State loyalty oath. He became dissatisfied with Watson’s form of behaviorism and began to develop his own. Purposive Behaviorism : Tolman’s system combining the objective study of behavior with the consideration of purposiveness or goal orientation in behavior. (all behavior has a purpose and it is purpose & goal driven) o Put forth in his book Purposive Behavior in Animals and Men ( 1932 ). Purpose & Behavior o Attributing purpose to an organism’s behavior seems to imply consciousness, a mentalistic concept that has no place in behavioral psychology. o He made it clear that he was still very much the behaviorist in subject matter and methodology. o Like Watson , he rejected introspection and had no interest in presumed internal experiences that were not accessible to objective observation. To Tolman, it was obvious that all actions were goal-oriented; in other words, Tolman said behavior “ reeks ” of purpose and is oriented toward achieving a goal or learning the means to an end. o In his experiments, Tolman is dealing with objective responses of the organism and the measurements are stated in terms of changes in responsive behavior as a function of learning (objective data) . Watsonian behaviorists criticized the attribution of purpose to behavior and instead that any reference to purposiveness implied recognition of conscious processes . o Tolman responded that it made no difference whether the person/animal was conscious. o The conscious experience, if there was any, associated with purposive behavior did not influence the organism’s behavioral responses. (Tolman states he was only interested in overt responses) Intervening Variables
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