Bullying Mitigatation Through Behaviorist
Bullying Mitigatation Through Behaviorist
Bullying Mitigatation Through Behaviorist Approaches
Can Bullying Be Mitigated Through Behaviorist Approaches?
Behaviorism (or behaviourism) is a systematic approach to understanding the behavior of humans and other animals. It assumes that all behaviors are either reflexes produced by a response to certain stimuli in the environment, or a consequence of that individual’s history, including especially reinforcement and punishment, together with the individual’s current motivational state and controlling stimuli. Although behaviorists generally accept the important role of heredity in determining behavior, they focus primarily on environmental factors.
Behaviorism combines elements of philosophy, methodology, and psychological theory. It emerged in the late nineteenth century as a reaction to depth psychology and other traditional forms of psychology, which often had difficulty making predictions that could be tested experimentally. The earliest derivatives of Behaviorism can be traced back to the late 19th century where Edward Thorndike pioneered the law of effect, a process that involved strengthening or weakening behavior through the use of reinforcement and punishment. Bullying Mitigatation Through Behaviorist
During the first half of the twentieth century, John B. Watson devised methodological behaviorism, which rejected introspective methods and sought to understand behavior by only measuring observable behaviors and events. It was not until the 1930s that B. F. Skinner suggested that private events—including thoughts and feelings—should be subjected to the same controlling variables as observable behavior, which became the basis for his philosophy called “radical behaviorism.” While Watson and Ivan Pavlov investigated the stimulus-response procedures of classical conditioning, Skinner assessed the controlling nature of consequences and also its potential effect on the antecedents (or discriminative stimuli) that emits behavior; the technique became known as operant conditioning.
Skinner’s radical behaviorism has been highly successful experimentally, revealing new phenomena with new methods, but Skinner’s dismissal of theory limited its development. Theoretical behaviorism recognized that a historical system, an organism, has a state as well as sensitivity to stimuli and the ability to emit responses. Indeed, Skinner himself acknowledged the possibility of what he called “latent” responses in humans, even though he neglected to extend this idea to rats and pigeons. Latent responses constitute a repertoire, from which operant reinforcement can select.
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The application of radical behaviorism—known as applied behavior analysis—is used in a variety of settings, including, for example, organizational behavior management, to the treatment of mental disorders, such as autism and substance abuse. In addition, while behaviorism and cognitive schools of psychological thought may not agree theoretically, they have complemented each other in cognitive-behavior therapies, which have demonstrated utility in treating certain pathologies, including simple phobias, PTSD, and mood disorders.
!!Bullying Mitigatation Through Behaviorist Approaches
A classic example of bullying is a scenario in which a much larger, stronger bully physically intimidates and harasses a smaller, weaker victim to steal the victim’s lunch money. You might think that the obvious solution to the bullying in this example is to punish the bully to prevent the behavior from reoccurring. It would be nice if the solution were that simple, but it often is not. The bully may receive gains from the behavior (positive reinforcement; e.g., money to buy more food at lunch or respect from peers) that outweigh the punishment. Furthermore, if the bullying has occurred over a length of time with the same victim, the victim may also develop a conditioned response. For example, suppose that the school bell signaling that it is lunch time rings just before the bully approaches the victim for his lunch money. Initially the bell is a neutral stimulus that produces no specific response. Over time, the victim may associate the bell with the fear response of being bullied, such that the bell alone triggers a fear response in the potential victim. Now the bell is a conditioned stimulus because it elicits a conditioned response. Bullying Mitigatation Through Behaviorist
Classical and operant conditioning can be used to understand why bullying occurs, as illustrated in the previous example, and to design effective interventions to reduce bullying behavior. In this discussion, you will use classical or operant conditioning to propose a strategy to mitigate bullying.
Review this week’s Learning Resources on the behaviorist perspective and classical and operant conditioning.
Pay particular attention to the meaning of the terms in each type of conditioning. Classical conditioning terms include: UCS (unconditioned stimulus), UCR (unconditioned response), NS (neutral stimulus), CS (conditioned stimulus), CR (conditioned response). Operant conditioning terms include positive reinforcers, and negative reinforcers, and punishers.
Select one conditioning approach and use it to propose a strategy to mitigate bullying.
Operationalize the characteristics of your strategy. For example, if you selected the classical approach, identify which aspects of your strategy represent the UCS, UCR, NS, CS, and CR. If you selected the operant approach, identify which aspects (or operants) of your strategy represent positive reinforcers, negative reinforcers, and/or punishers. Bullying Mitigatation Through Behaviorist