The Teaching of Behavior Modification: In and Beyond the Classroom
Behavior Modification began as the practice of simple behavioral principles in special-needs cases. This is no longer the case. I teach Behavior Modification at my University to a selection of future educators, nurses, and psychology practitioners. To do so, I must instruct my students on the contemporary principles of behaviorism, and how they apply across a variety of fields. These principles are far more sophisticated than most people think, and are often ignored or misrepresented in introductory textbooks. Social learning, critical thinking and problem solving are integral parts of behavior modification, and are best learned in application. Each of my students conducts their own modification program, as well as writing papers on additional applications. For the paper presentation, I will have examples of instructional materials, as well as examples of student programs from previous classes. Finally, I will have a listing of key concepts that successful programs depend upon. For each, I will offer examples of successful applications, as well as misapplications that fail.
Keywords: Behavior Modification, Operant Psychology, Rule-Governed Behavior
Prof. Matthew George-Luke Margres
Professor, Department of Psychology, Saginaw Valley State University