2
$\begingroup$

This question already has an answer here:

While reading up on the differences between cognitivism and behaviorism, I came across this:

Cognitive science, however, overcomes Behaviorism’s main faults, particularly that reflexes and reinforcements cannot account for all human behavior and that animal behavior is not the best predictor of human behavior.

https://woknowing.wordpress.com/2010/10/12/behaviorism-vs-cognitivisim/

Could you give some concrete examples of such behaviors that behaviorism fails to account for and where cognitivism can?

$\endgroup$

marked as duplicate by Robin Kramer, AliceD Apr 14 '17 at 18:22

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

2
$\begingroup$

let's have a look at the social cognitive theory by Bandura: It says, that behavior can be acquired by simply watching other people act on something. Maybe you have already heard of the famous bobo-doll experiment, if not here is a link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=128Ts5r9NRE Anyway: behaviorism doesn't care about anything going on inside our mind, like reasoning for example. It simply breaks behavior down to stimulus-response-mechanisms or behavior-response-interactions, that is why behaviorists call the mind a "black box". They simply think in a way of Input-Output mechanisms, the thing in between these two gets neglected. So, going back to the social cognitive theory: Behaviorists can't explain behavior, that was acquired through observing other people. The person, who is the observer, has never experienced something like a stimulus-response trial, or acted on the behavior on his own. However, we know that it is possible and people need something like a memory, perception, reasoning, to learn in such a way. So, we need cognitive abilities to explain this kind of behavior (we have to look inside the black box), which is incompatible with behaviorism.

In other words: every behavior, that needs or was being activated by something, that is a part of our cognitive abilities, is a behavior, that can't be explained by behaviorism.

Another example is problem solving: To solve a problem, we think about the situation, reassemble the elements and then act. Behaviorism can't account for such a behavior.

$\endgroup$
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ i hope, that you can understand my answer :) $\endgroup$ – bucky Mar 1 '17 at 22:11

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.