Pavlov (1927), founder of classical conditioning used dogs in his experiments. The key terms within his experiment were stimulus and response. The unconditioned stimulus of the child’s fear would be the presence of animals and the unconditioned response would be the behavior of crying. The unconditioned response would become conditioned as It’s associated with the stimulus (Doherty, Hughes, 2009). Skinner (1966) developed operant conditioning, focusing on reinforcement or punishment to elicit changes in behavior.
He found reinforced behavior becomes strengthened and repeated whereas behavior not reinforced becomes extinct and weakened. For child X, his previous experience with animals may have been negative; therefore he may prefer the experience not to occur again (Miller, 2011). Watson (1924) believed Individual differences and experiences mould our behavior as emphasized below. “Give me a dozen healthy infants, well-formed, and my own special world to bring them up in and I’ll guarantee to take any one at random and train him to become any type of specialist I might select… (quoted in Schaffer, 2004, peg. 336). Influenced by Pavlov, Watson believed behavior can be controlled through understanding relationships between stimulus and response. Child Ax’s home or educational setting could change to adapt a pet policy within the environment, to become confident to eradicate his fear. Bandeau (1986) emphasized on behavior as imitation with four elements; attention, mental representation, mitotic response and motivation. Child X could have seen someone showing negative affection towards an animal (attention allowing him to remember his observations (mental representation).
This may be the reason as to how he behaves In the same way (mitotic response) when he felt the urge to cry (motivation) (Levine, Munich, 2011 This theory highlights people learn from imitation as a direct reinforcement of their own behavior within their environment. “The psychodrama approach focuses on the role of internal processesћ. In shaping personality, and thereby behavior. ” (Clansman, Had, 2009, peg. 224) our preconscious mind or they are totally inaccessible within our unconscious mind.
Our unconscious thoughts can become conscious through dream interpretation, free association and transference. Many unconscious thoughts are experiences best forgotten (Gross, 2010). Child X could have experienced a negative incident with animals causing him to erase this event from his mind. Freud recognized three structures of personality resulting in clashes. Old is the basic personality wanting everything and will do anything to feed it’s desires through operating a ‘pleasure principle’. For child X, the id would make him cry while looking at animals making it uncontrollable.
Superego is the sensible structure conditioned by the environment and has a conscience of both right and wrong, so would tell child X not to seek attention by crying. Ego is a mediator between id and superego; therefore controls both structures (Hermann, 1994). However, as child X grows older, his superego ill control his id through moral principles resisting temptations of crying. Humanists are optimistic and recognize behavior through own free will (Gross, 2010). Mason (1968) and Rogers (1951) regarded personal growth and fulfillment in life as basic human nature.
Both theorists emphasis on growth and fulfillment for a person to be able to self-actualities (Nee, 1996). Mason believes individuals have capability to progress towards the level of self- actualization highlighted through hierarchical stages (see appendix 1). However, if there is a failure to meet lower level needs, progression to the next stage is delayed. Although there are many needs to be met at the bottom there is a potential to achieve for all (Nee, 1996). Child X may have experienced a dangerous situation with an animal; therefore his safety needs would need to be met for him to progress onto the next stage.
Rogers believed humans have one basic aim; to self-actualities by fulfilling their own potential. His theory highlights self-esteem as the ‘real self and the ‘ideal self. Being able to achieve what one is capable of allows self-actualization and positive regard from others to promote self-esteem (Doherty, Hughes, 2009). If child X was shown positive regard when in the presence of animals, he may remove his fear and begin to self-actualities. “Cognitive psychology is concerned with… Perception, learning, memory, language, emotion, concept formation and thinking. (Essence, 1995, peg. L) Cosmogonists view people and their environment as important. Piglet’s (1969) constructivist theory is based on age ability of stage learning. His theory describes children’s perspective on their world (Levine, Munich, 2011). Pigged identified four stages of learning (see appendix 2) believing past experiences shape children’s organization of the world. Reflecting on Piglet’s stages, child X would be in the very early stages of the pre-operational stage as he cannot see his fear of animals from another perspective.
Using symbolic features within this stage may allow him to make links between reality and fantasy (Dates, Grayson, 2004) forming close links to the psychodrama approach regarding accessing the unconscious mind. Child X may not access his unconscious mind due to unpleasant past experience. Weights (1978) emphasized social interactions through scaffolding and understanding of the world (Curtis, Change, 2005). Like Pigged, he constructed a stage theory (see appendix 3). Child X may understand emotions and experiences if knowledge is stored within him.
Making him understand there is nothing to fear about with animals, may be beyond his intellectual capability because of his global developmental delay. He may not have reached the stage of maturity within ZAP to remove his fears. However, through reconstruction and social interactions, he may become used to the presence of animals within his environment. The cultural context within stages may influence his fear as family contexts may imply a ‘no pets’ policy, Hereford imitating the family attitude.
Behaviorist’s emphasis on connections between the environment and the behavior and ignore physiological and cognitive events occurring. Pavlov and Skinner experimented on animals whereas Bandeau and Watson experimented with children. The behaviorism perspective is concerned with nurture as the environment is the stimulus of it’s theories. It does not take into perspective holism, therefore against the humanistic approach (Clansman, Had, 2009). Humanists found the psychodrama approach to be too pessimistic in comparison to their optimistic approach.
This approach is individualistic and studies internal world of the person rather than external. Measles hierarchy suggests moving upwards in regards to achievement similar to the stage theories for other perspectives. Although his theory is not age related, it is similar to Hoosegows as individuals’ progress accordingly. However, Pigged identified children cannot progress onto the next stage without having developed fully in the previous. All these theorists have one thing in common; failure to meet lower level needs results in a delay or fixation to develop (Gross, 2010).
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