Behaviourism and cognitive psychology : a reassessment (1989)
Cognitive science has replaced behaviourism as the dominant force within contemporary psychology. Psychology is purported to be a rational science, yet this most recent paradigmatic shift cannot be rationally explained or justified. Modern and sophisticated behavioural theories meet the accepted criteria for good explanatory theory within a rational science, while modern cognitive theories do not. Sophisticated forms of behavioural theory exhibit explanatory power and plausibility. In contrast, all cognitive theories are based upon a set of fundamentally flawed assumptions that preclude the development of plausible psychological explanation. In spite of claims to the contrary, modern cognitive theories continue to exhibit these logical flaws. Moreover, any plausible interpretations or aspects of modern cognitive theories are those compatible with the assumptions of behaviourism and devoid of cognitive explanatory constructs. Cognitive psychology is based upon assumptions of rationality, yet its current dominance cannot be rationally justified. Behaviourism rejects the premise of rational action, yet is acceptable according to the criteria of a rational science. Such a state of affairs can only be explained from within a behavioural framework.
KeywordsBehaviorism (Psychology); Cognitive psychology
RightsAll Rights Reserved
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Fry, Malcolm Alistair (University of Canterbury, 1976)From a discussion of theories of behavioral contrast, it was concluded that earlier theoretical treatments of the topic, such as Reynolds' reinforcement frequency hypothesis, Terrace's response suppression hypothesis, and ...
A behaviour modification intervention to increase the number of student cyclists using cycle lights at night Gerard, Katherine (University of Canterbury, 1994)The failure of over half the cycling population of Christchurch to use adequate head and tail lights when cycling at night has continued to be of considerable concern. A behaviour modification campaign promoting the ...
Gauthern, Dean (University of Canterbury, 2004)The clinical cognitive model has significant problems. It employs lay conceptions of cognition and emotion. Moreover, its core assumptions have significant flaws. CBT, more generally, has failed to bridge the gap between ...