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Psych 80A Psychology and Religion lecture 5-Ralph Quin

by: Chelsea Miller

Psych 80A Psychology and Religion lecture 5-Ralph Quin Psych 80A

Marketplace > University of California - Santa Cruz > Psychology > Psych 80A > Psych 80A Psychology and Religion lecture 5 Ralph Quin
Chelsea Miller
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B.F. Skinner's theory on religion: A Non-Relationship
Psych and Religion
Class Notes
b.f. skinner, thescientificmethod, explanatpryfictions, prediction, control, operant conditioning, reinforcement, extinguishion, shaping, schedules of reinforcement, interval, ratio, Continuous, superstitiousbehavior, noncontingentreinforcement, religioninstitutions, Psychology, religion, behavioralism, waldonII
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Chelsea Miller on Sunday October 9, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Psych 80A at University of California - Santa Cruz taught by Quinn in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 3 views. For similar materials see Psych and Religion in Psychology at University of California - Santa Cruz.


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Date Created: 10/09/16
Lecture 5 Psych and Religion *Psych and Religion outlines are not included in these notes due to copyright. These  are my personal notes from lecture—if you need the outline they are provided on  ecommons. Lecture 5 10/6/16 Sum up of Lecture 4: Freud looked at the magical view of the world as something equivalent to childishness.  Science has incredible power (scientific method) which leads to results, while religion  only has its roots in history, therefore we need to grow up Religion has declined in its importance as a world view at universities while science has  grown Scientific Method needs to be proven in an objective agreement and through  intersubjective agreement—that is scientific knowledge Science is the objective verification of a hypothesis which needs to be repeated through control experiment, predicted, and reduced into numbers ­study of the physical/observable world/matter, it can be seen observed, and  measured  Bringing psychology into the scientific method—B. F. Skinner (behaviorist)  Concept of explanatory fictions o Terms used by non­believers to describe the causes of human behavior  when they are unaware of the true causes: like freedom, autonomy,  dignity, will power, creativity   The hypothesis that we are not free is essential to the application of the scientific  method in the study of human behavior—all lie outside of the individual  o We are all influenced by things outside of ourselves o Skinner said that creativity is like how a chicken lays an egg o An individual’s actions can be as lawful as any movement in a physics lab  Science predicts, past and future Lecture 5 Psych and Religion  Science not only describes but it predicts (past and future) nor is prediction the  last word—relevant conditions can be altered so that in other words we can  control the future based on environmental manipulations o Skinner advocated to control and manipulate behavior and his techniques  are used everywhere and are very successful o Behavior modifications are used to control and change behavior   Extremely successful  Psychological reinforces How free are we and how much are we controlled by external factors?  Operant Conditioning o What happens after the behavior is what can control it—not like classical  or respondent conditioning  Rewarding behavior will strengthen it  Punishing behavior will weaken it o Skinner is not a big advocate on punishment but sometimes you have  to/it is necessary in order to extinguish a behavior  Skinner box: used rats and pigeon and generalized to humans saying that they  are not that different from us, we just are a little more complex and are able to  figure out how to control other peoples’ behavior o The pigeon in the box will tap a disk and get a food pellet  Continuous reinforcement schedule o Adverse stimulus or punishment/stopping the reinforcement  extinguishes behavior   Fixed interval reinforcement schedule—reinforcing every 90  seconds is stronger than continuous  Variable interval schedule—reinforcing every 70 to 100 seconds is stronger than fixed interval   Ratio reinforcement—every 5  time is stronger than variable  interval  Variable ratio reinforcement—random time for reward after  continuous behavior sets behavior most strongly (example being  slot machines or a career in real­estate) Lecture 5 Psych and Religion This is shaping the behavior  Random rewards or reinforcement leads to superstitious behavior/non­ contingent or accidental reinforcement which causes strange rituals to be set  up and this is seen in a lot of religious behavior  God, faith, and piety are useless concepts—non­behaviorists explain how the  world works because of ignorance  Institutionalized religions are designed programs of behavior modification  and control and that is their only reason o Skinner’s only problem with religious institutions is their incredible reliance on punishment; he is not against controlling behavior but he is against  unnecessary punishment  The other problem with control of religious institutions are that they  are controlled in ways which most effectively reinforce those who  are in charge of the behavior modification program  Waldon II­ book Skinner wrote o What would a perfect society look like? Sum up of the book and Skinners thoughts: The simple fact is are religious practices  which members brought to Waldon II have fallen away little by little and religious faith  becomes irrelevant when fears are taken care of and the hopes of people are fulfilled  here on Earth. In this society we have no need for religion/faith/philosophy and we are  far better behaved than most religious church members


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