The Behavior of Organisms

The Behavior of Organisms

by B. F. Skinner

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Overview

With the publication of his first book, The Behavior of Organisms (1938), B. F. Skinner launched a new science based on selection by consequences as the mechanism through which behavior changes during the lifetime of the individual. The book summarizes nearly ten years of research, spanning the years of Skinner's graduate school days at Harvard through his three years as a member of the Society of Fellows. In the book, Skinner defines his basic unit of behavior, which he named the operant, proposes rate as the basic datum, and describes his research program–to identify the variables of which behavior is a function.

After publication of The Behavior of Organisms, Skinner continued research and writing at the University of Minnesota and at Indiana University before returning in 1948 to Harvard. He extended his scientific analysis to the design of cultures in Walden Two (1948), to verbal behavior (Verbal Behavior, 1957), and to the field of education (The Technology of Teaching, 1968). In 1971 Skinner published a best seller, Beyond Freedom and Dignity, addressing the implications of behavioral science for traditional notions of control. These endeavors, and many other articles and books, had their origins in The Behavior of Organisms which opened up a new frontier in the understanding of behavior.

Foreword for the e-book edition by W. H. Morse

Product Details

BN ID: 2940157626815
Publisher: B. F. Skinner Foundation
Publication date: 02/11/2016
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 457
File size: 7 MB

About the Author

B. F. Skinner (1904-1990), America's most influential behavioral scientist, authored over 20 books and nearly 200 articles. He served as the Psychology Department Chair at the University of Indiana and later became the Edgar Pierce Professor of Psychology at Harvard University until his retirement in 1974. His contributions to psychology have incited an abundance of developments and remain relevant in the field today.

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