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Jason Thorne English 1102 Kareen Malone Paper 1 Behaviorism Psychology has many different models and approaches One such approach is called behaviorism Behaviorism began its greatest development in the early twentieth century It brought together the ideas of men like James Dewey Yerkes Pavlov Bekhterev and Watson Previous psychology had tried to combine the ideas of behavior and consciousness but behaviorists said that modern psychology should discard all reference to consciousness Behaviorists attempted to prove that all organisms both man and animal adjust themselves to their environment by means of hereditary adaptation and habit adaptation When examining behaviorism in terms of their conception of human nature there are six key areas one must look at nurturing vs nature how a person learns a persons perception thought and speech the idea of emotion and of personality and finally whether this is a study of physiology or psychology On the idea of nurturing vs nature behaviorists tend to lean toward the side of nurture Z Y Kuo said that all behavior is learned While not all behaviorists were this fundamental they agreed that there were relatively few innate instincts The majority of attention was given to experience John Watson said that given a dozen healthy infants and I could take any one of them at random and train him to become any type of specialist I desired However Watson and other behaviorists did agree that instinct was present in the form of inherited or unconditioned reflexes They could not deny that some actions were present from birth yet they could categorize them as basic instincts and file them away as the precursor to all later actions which were brought on by experience This idea was one way that behaviorists ruled out the idea of a consciousness If all actions were merely reactions based on experience then a human and an animal were basically identical with the human being merely a more advanced animal This
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