What Is Behaviorism?

Behaviorism seeks to identify observable, measurable laws that could explain all of human behavior. Although psychology now pays more attention to the inner landscape of emotions and thought, behaviorism has had a durable influence on everything from animal training to parenting techniques to the bonuses financial managers receive.

Recent Posts on Behaviorism

Preventing Disaster Through Screening and Assessment

By Kathryn Seifert on June 30, 2015 in Stop The Cycle
Recently we have seen two convicted murderers, Richard Matt and David Sweat, escape prison with the help of two prison employees, Gene Palmer and Joyce Mitchell. It leads us to ask the question, how does this happen?

6 Tips for a Fun 4th of July for Parents of Kids With Autism

The 4th of July is a fun and exciting holiday filled with many amazing activities for your children. However, for some individuals with autism and their families, the crowded public spaces and the crack and shimmer of fireworks can be difficult and uncomfortable.

Serial Killers: Modus Operandi, Signature, Staging & Posing

By Scott A. Bonn Ph.D. on June 29, 2015 in Wicked Deeds
FBI profilers examine, among other things, whether a victim’s body was posed to predict whether an unknown offender is an organized or disorganized killer. Organized criminals are meticulous planners, often psychopathic but know right from wrong, not insane and show no remorse. Disorganized criminals are impulsive, irrational, and assault victims in blitz-like attacks.

It's the Hard Work, Stupid.

For decades, scholars have debated whether talent or effort is the better predictor of success. Research on the topic is mixed – but, this said, I say you put your money on effort – and here’s why.

People Don’t Always Make a Lot of Sense

Patients don't always do what they should, or what they say they will. When you try to figure out the reason, you may find out that there isn't any.

Does Dolezal Get to Choose?

Your race is socially constructed in a given situation by other people, not by you.

Father: Not Just Another Mother

By Kyle D. Pruett M.D. on June 16, 2015 in Once Upon a Child
Safety and security are huge concerns for today’s parents, both at home and in the wider world. So, which approach is more likely to raise a secure child?

The Kindness of Dogs: New Book Explains Why Cesar's Gotta Go

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on June 10, 2015 in Animal Emotions
"The Secret History of Kindness: Learning From How Dogs Learn" by Melissa Pierson extols behaviorism and positive reinforcement in training dogs. This wide-ranging book provides a detailed history of B. F. Skinner's behaviorism -- where people get it right and many get it wrong -- and how being kind to dogs and other animals is the only way to teach them to live with us.

Yes, You Are Probably Biased:

Scientific evidence declares that prejudice is an inherent part of every person; we are genetically wired to be racist, sexist, ethnocentric, etc. However, does that justify the discrimination and consequential brutality that are so rife in our society? The answer is NO. Catch your triggers and choose to make different choices about how you will react.

What Do You Reach For First Thing In The Morning?

By Gregg McBride on May 23, 2015 in The Weight-ing Game
What do you feel like you have to have first thing in the morning that might give a nutritionist a panic attack? By paying attention to how you feel (how you really feel), you might just realize these substances aren't what you're craving after all. And as our tastes change, our bodies, minds and health can change—for the better.

Perfectionism and Trichotillomania, Like Oil and Water

Striving for perfection but pulling your hair

Boxing and Domestic Abuse

Why boxing is not a causal factor behind domestic abuse

What to Do When Your Anxiety Won’t Go Away

Outsmart your brooding ways with these nine mind games. After all, calm is an inside job.

Proactive Intervention for Psychosis

The adolescent who is encouraged and integrated with his peers may not develop schizophrenia.

Finding Something to Like

There is an art to what you say to people when you are evaluating their work and the work leaves much to be desired. My view is that you don’t want to be dishonest, but at the same time you don’t want to crush a person’s spirit.

5 Tweaks to CBT

Psychotherapy depends on clients messing up the therapy like they mess up their other relationships.

When a Parent Is Incarcerated

A two-step process developed by Dr. Glen Palm may help children cope with their parents' incarceration.

What Is Your Problem, Baltimore?

By Kathryn Seifert on May 04, 2015 in Stop The Cycle
What Is Your Problem, Baltimore? Racism, Lack of Economic Opportunity, Community Engagement, or Something Else?

Getting to the Goal

By Seth Slater M.F.A. on April 29, 2015 in The Dolphin Divide
How focusing on the positive helps us overcome obstacles. What we want is often more powerful than what we fear. But if we’re not careful in how we frame our goals, we may be setting ourselves up for disappointment—and inadvertently turn our fears into reality.

Do You Have the Personality of a Neanderthal?

By Gregg Murray Ph.D. on April 26, 2015 in Caveman Politics
Almost all of us have some Neanderthal in us. What can that tell us about how these ancient cousins of ours thought?

Encouraging the Best From Your Child

Parents have so many worries, but by instituting some proactive strategies for positive reinforcement they may be able to affect healthy outcomes in their children.

What We Choose to Believe - The Power of Belief

By Po Chi Wu Ph.D. on April 17, 2015 in Jacob's Staff
Why are we more tolerant of our own fallibility than that of machines that operate on probabilities (algorithms)? What does this say about our confidence in science and scientific evidence? Does the entrepreneurial mindset offer a different perspective on how we learn and grow?

Forensic Media Psychology and a Camera in Every Pocket!

Forensic Media Psychology (FMP) is an important sub-specialty in psychology offering increasing professional opportunity. Present applications include law, public policy, government, health care, entertainment, education, commerce, the military, social justice, and more. Citizen video and a camera in every pocket is causing a cultural reset.

Biased? Yes, against the tide and FOR baby’s needs

By Darcia Narvaez Ph.D. on April 05, 2015 in Moral Landscapes
Someone recently remarked that I was biased... Yes, I am biased FOR babies. I am out of sync with biases that lead people to think letting babies scream is a good thing. Not!