An approach to psychology that limits itself to a description of relationships between observable environmental events and the ensuing observable behavior of organisms in the environment. Typically behaviorism rejects subjective experience as a proper topic of study and resists explanations of observable acts in terms of inferred but unobservable mental processes.


The school of thought that stresses the need for psychology to be an objective science. In other words, that psychology should be a science-based on observable (and only observable) events, not the unconscious or conscious mind. This perspective was first suggested and propagated by John Watson in 1913, who wanted psychology to study only observable behaviors and get away from the study of the conscious mind completely. Watson’s primary rationale was that only observable events are verifiable and thus, are the only events that can be proven false. This is an extremely important concept for science; without it, how can you ever find out what is true, false, real, or fake.

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