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Canada (158,081)
Psychology (9,549)
PSYA02H3 (931)
Chapter 1

Chapter One Bmod.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Steve Joordens

Chapter OneIntroduction to Behaviour ModificationDefining Human BehaviourBehaviour is what people do and say It involves a persons actionsBehaviour is not a static characteristic ofa personBehaviours have one or more dimensions that can be measured You can measure the frequency of a behaviour that is you can count the number of times the behaviour occurs You can measure the duration of the behaviour or the time from when an instance of the behaviour starts until it stops You can measure the intensity of a behaviour or the physical force involved in the behaviour You can measure the speed of behaviour or the latency from some event to the start of behaviourThese are all physical dimensions of behaviour Behaviours can be observed described and recorded by others or by the person engaging in the behaviour A behaviour is an action and therefore can be observed or detected through one of the senses Because it is observable it is recordableBehaviours have an impact on the environment including the physical or the social other people and ourselvesBecause a behaviour is an action that involves movement through space and time the occurrence of a behaviour has some effect on the environment in which it occurs Behaviour is lawful its occurrence is systematically influenced by environmental events Basic behavioural principles describe the functional relationships between our behaviour and environmental events These principles describe how our behaviour is influenced by or occurs as a function of environmental events Behaviours may be overt or covert Most often behaviour modification procedures are used to understand and change overt behaviours An overt behaviour is an action that can be observed and recorded by a person other than the one engaging in the behaviour Covert behaviours also called private events are not observable to others Defining Behaviour ModificationBehaviour modification is the field of psychology concerned with analyzing and modifying human behaviour Analyzing means identifying the functional relationship between environmental events and a particular behaviour to understand the reasons for behaviour or to determine why a person behaved the way she did Modifying means developing and implementing procedures to help people change their behaviour It involves altering environmental events so as to influence behaviour They change socially significant behaviours with the goal of improving life Characteristics of Behaviour ModificationBMod procedures are designed to change behaviour not a personal characteristic or trait It deemphasizes labeling The behaviour to be modified is called the target behaviour
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