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During the period of American psychology between 1930-1960, the focus appeared to shift slightly from Watson’s “conceptual and methodological behaviorism” to a less mechanistic behaviorism promoted by B. F. Skinner (Benjamin 1997). The newly developing behaviorism of the time focused on animal studies, theory, operational definitions and underlying learning. Skinner’s publication, Science and Human Behavior, was focused mainly on applied psychology rather than pure theory. According to Parke et al (1994), this publication was considered to be “Watson updated” and “Watson Sophisticated”. Skinner put a bigger emphasis on a larger evolutionary context than Watson did, and was eventually known for his approach of behavior modification or “behavior analysis”. Skinner is well known for designing research to apply behaviorism to the real world through fields such as industrial and organizational psychology, behavioral medicine, etc.

        Other than Watson’s contributions, there are four major sources of influence deemed important to the development of neobehaviorism in the US.

“Logical Positivism”, which is a view of science derived from philosophers during WWI, stresses the scientific method be used in order to gain truly objective knowledge (Benjamin 1997). The idea of operationism, promoted by physicist Bridgman and psychologist Stevens, focused on the fact that operational definitions were very necessary in order to be specific and completely objective. They believed that “theoretical constructs had reality only in terms of the operations used to observe or measure those constructs”. The focus on animal studies, continuing on from where Watson, Pavlov and Thorndike had left off, promised precision because all processes seemed to be less complex in animals than they would ever be in human beings. Finally, the emphasis on learning and the basic idea that adaptation to the environment resulted from learning pushed psychology towards a new and updated version of behaviorism. Learning capacity would eventually become part...