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This module explores the application of operant conditioning (ala B.F. Skinner) and psychodynamic learning theory (ala John Dollard and Neal Miller) to personality development. The references cited in this module can be found in the accompanying module entitled "References for Personality."

While psychodynamic theory was developing in Europe, American psychology was largely under the influence of behaviorism. The American psychologist John B. Watson (of “Little Albert” fame) is considered to be the father of behaviorism. Although he is not known for addressing issues of personality development, he did feel it was important for behaviorists to do so. His approach involved reducing personality to smaller and smaller units of behavior referred to as habit systems, suggesting that personality was very consistent. Nonetheless, through further conditioning the personality of an individual could change, leading Watson to make the bold statement that if he was given a dozen healthy infants he could take any one at random and train him or her for any career, including “doctor, lawyer, artist, merchant-chief and yes, even beggar-man and thief” (cited in Stagner, 1988; see also Lundin, 1979).

As the scientific study of behavior continued, it became common to try determining behavior on the basis of mathematical models. This work led to an era of grand learning theories, which culminated in the highly complex models of behavior proposed by Clark Hull (see Bower&Hilgard, 1981). This research took the behavioral study of personality in a very different direction than psychodynamic theory. The direction in which B. F. Skinner took personality theory, however, was so different that it became known as “radical behaviorism.” Skinner rejected anything he could not directly observe, so concepts such as consciousness, thought, reasoning, and the “mind,” were all considered irrelevant to the study of individuals. Only the specific behaviors performed by the individual were open to being examined in Skinner’s form of behaviorism.

In contrast, John Dollard and Neal Miller tried to find some common ground between psychodynamic theory and learning theory. Dollard was a true generalist, with interests in anthropology and sociology in addition to psychology. Miller studied with two renowned learning theorists, Edwin Guthrie and Clark Hull, and was psychoanalyzed by Heinz Hartman in Vienna, while studying in Europe in the 1930s. Together, Dollard and Miller tried to develop a theory that would encompass psychodynamic theory, learning theory, and the influence of sociocultural factors. Their effort to develop what might be called a unified theory of personality stands in stark contrast to the constraints of radical behaviorism. Most importantly, they set the stage for the social learning theorists who followed.

B. f. skinner and the behavioral analysis of personality development

Many psychology students find it difficult to apply the strict principles of radical behaviorism to personality development. And yet, psychologists generally consider our discipline to be objective and scientific . Thus, it would seem essential that we acknowledge those psychologists who apply a strict scientific approach to the study of behavior. Skinner represents the extreme conditions under which some psychologists control the study of behavior, and his contributions to understanding the basic underlying principles of reward and punishment, and their consequences, rank him among the most influential psychologists of all time.

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
learn
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
learn
Google
da
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Bhagvanji
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
revolt
da
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
Damian
yes that's correct
Professor
I think
Professor
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
Alexandre
nanocopper obvius
Alexandre
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
Rafiq
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
Damian
How we are making nano material?
LITNING Reply
what is a peer
LITNING Reply
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
LITNING Reply
What is STMs full form?
LITNING
scanning tunneling microscope
Sahil
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Santosh
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
Mahi
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
Rafiq
if virus is killing to make ARTIFICIAL DNA OF GRAPHENE FOR KILLED THE VIRUS .THIS IS OUR ASSUMPTION
Anam
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Anam
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
Hafiz
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
Bob
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
brayan
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Damian
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
Renato
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
?
Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
why?
Adin
what school?
Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Personality theory in a cultural context. OpenStax CNX. Nov 04, 2015 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11901/1.1
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