Freud vs. Skinner

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Aaron Linkenhoker Psychology 101 28 Jan. 2011 Freud vs. Skinner B. F. Skinner and Sigmund Freud were both revolutionary psychologists, although they had completely different ideas and approaches to the science. Skinner’s approach involved the behavioral perspective while Freud’s was the psychodynamic perspective. The two perspectives are completely different in the way they approach psychology. Although Ivan Pavlov was the founder of behaviorism, Skinner is considered the “greatest modern psychologist”. Skinner expanded on the principles that Pavlov first made noticed. He believed that the unconscious state of mind was irrelevant and that observable behavior was the key to the mind. Skinner said that behavior is altered based upon changes; not the components already in the mind. He believed that one’s own decisions were not the reason for behavior but changes in one’s environment. He changed the environmental conditions to change behavior. Many of the principles of Skinner are seen used today. Trained animals, such as the whales at Sea World are evidence of the environmental manipulation that Skinner used. Sigmund Freud was and continues to be a very controversial psychologist. He has paved many paths in the psychology field of study. Freud explored observable behavior and rather than changing the environment looked for alternate reasons for the behavior. Freud’s theory of psychodynamic perspective stated that all behaviors, both ordinary and unordinary are controlled by the unconscious mind. Freud’s research led him to discover that the unconscious mind controlled his patients’ behavior. Freud was a neurologist by degree but used his background to explore areas in the psychological field. Freud looked into the pasts of individuals to see if there was something that made them act the way they did such as traumatic experiences and childhood occurrences. He
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