Studies in human behavior


    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

Reviews the book, Studies in human behavior by Merle Lawrence (1949). Lawrence's manual is an attempt to build a laboratory course which will have unity and coherence, and in which the experiments will illustrate “some of the more basic concepts that flow through general, social, and clinical psychology”. The author hopes to achieve his goal by orienting his experiments around a central theme. This theme is provided by a pervasive emphasis on perception as the key process in the analysis of human behavior. An overall evaluation of the book is difficult. Granted the author's particular theoretical position, one must say he has carried out his task of building a well-integrated laboratory course with imagination and great technical skill. But here is the rub: How many teachers will be willing to commit themselves to his position, especially at an introductory stage of instruction? Many will doubt that these experiments do present “in laboratory form the principles underlying human behavior” (p. iii). That they represent some principles no one would deny, but many principles are missing which have helped to shape modern psychology and which the beginning experimenter cannot easily afford to ignore, such as Gestalt principles of perception and the principles of contemporary learning theory. Lawrence's systematic venture is a welcome addition, but inevitably sacrifices scope for the sake of integration. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

    loading  Loading Related Articles