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The Psychology of B F Skinner

The Psychology of B F Skinner

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April 2001 | 296 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Behaviourists, or more precisely Skinnerians, commonly consider Skinner's work to have been misrepresented, misunderstood, and to some extent defamed. In this book, the author clarifies the work of B F Skinner, and puts it into historical and philosophical context. Though not a biography, the book discusses Skinner himself, in brief. But the bulk of the book illuminates Skinner's contributions to psychology, his philosophy of science, his experimental research programme (logical positivism) and the behavioural principles that emerged from it, and applied aspects of his work. It also rebuts criticism of Skinner's work, including radical behaviourism, and discusses key developments by others that have derived from it.

As such, the book is a text on behaviourism, rather than on Skinner.

B F Skinner
The Man

Skinner's Intellectual Influences
Skinner's Philosophy of a Science of Human Behaviour
Radical Behaviorism

Operant Conditioning and the Experimental Analysis of Behaviour
Skinner on Cognition
Skinner on Language
Applied Behavior Analysis
B F Skinner
Expert Self-Manager

Skinner's Views on Bettering Society
Criticisms of Skinner
Skinner's Legacy
B F Skinner's Published Works

"O’Donohue and Ferguson provide an exceptionally clear picture of the breadth, scientific importance, and value to society of the work of the late B.F. Skinner. They include reasons that his work has been criticized and misunderstood. A substantial index, an attractive cover and typeface, and a readable style are bonuses to this exceptionally well-researched, accurate, and fair description of Skinner’s work. All collections." 


"The authors provide a concise overview of the basic principles and methods used by modern behavior analysts, as well as a thorough discussion of the difference between reward and reinforcement and elicited and emitted behavior."

Michael Clayton
Southern Illinios University
The Psychological Record

This text has been adopted by Capella University

Ms Patty Weigand
Harold Abel School of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Capella University
July 2, 2014

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