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behaviorism

[bih-heyv-yuh-riz-uh m]
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noun Psychology.
  1. the theory or doctrine that human or animal psychology can be accurately studied only through the examination and analysis of objectively observable and quantifiable behavioral events, in contrast with subjective mental states.

Origin of behaviorism

First recorded in 1910–15; behavior + -ism
Related formsbe·hav·ior·ist, noun, adjectivebe·hav·ior·is·tic, adjectivebe·hav·ior·is·ti·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for behaviorist

Historical Examples

  • The behaviorist would not seriously undertake to record everything that happens between stimulus and response.

    Creative Intelligence

    John Dewey, Addison W. Moore, Harold Chapman Brown, George H. Mead, Boyd H. Bode, Henry Waldgrave, Stuart James, Hayden Tufts, Horace M. Kallen

  • No behaviorist can possibly show that the air waves set in motion by my vocalization were an indispensable stimulus.

    Creative Intelligence

    John Dewey, Addison W. Moore, Harold Chapman Brown, George H. Mead, Boyd H. Bode, Henry Waldgrave, Stuart James, Hayden Tufts, Horace M. Kallen

  • Still, though a behaviorist, he upheld certain instinctual motivation theories.

    Strange Alliance

    Bryce Walton


Word Origin and History for behaviorist

behaviorism

n.

coined 1913 by U.S. psychologist John B. Watson (1878-1958) from behavior + -ism. Behaviorist is from the same time.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

behaviorist in Medicine

behaviorism

(bĭ-hāvyə-rĭz′əm)
n.
  1. A school of psychology that confines itself to the study of observable and quantifiable aspects of behavior and excludes subjective phenomena, such as emotions or motives.behavioral psychology
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

behaviorist in Culture

behaviorism

A theory that psychology is essentially a study of external human behavior rather than internal consciousness and desires. (See B. F. Skinner)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.