TUTORIAL: COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY AS A RADICAL BEHAVIORIST VIEWS IT

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Abstract

Cognitive psychology is the name for a class of positions that embrace mentalism: appeals to explicitly nonbehavioral states, mechanisms, processes, structures, and the like, operating in an explicitly nonbehavioral dimension of the mind, as causally effective antecedents in explanations of behavior. The present article reviews the background and nature of cognitive psychology, especially as contrasted with behaviorism. Of particular interest are the theoretical and philosophical differences between cognitive psychology and behaviorism, for instance, as those differences concern their respective explanatory practices. We conclude that cognitive psychology has conceptual affinities with mediational neobehaviorism, and that the radical behaviorism of B. F. Skinner differs from them both.

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