An Interbehavioral Approach to Operant Analysis
By means of a review of some aspects of major works of B. F. Skinner and J. R. Kantor, a rapprochement between radical behaviorism and interbehavioral psychology is posited. In particular an analytic field approach is described as paradigmatic for this reconciliation. The experimental analysis of behavior is presented not as atomistic and deterministic but as analytic and probabilistic. Interbehavioral psychology is extracted from its potentially reifiable biological physicalistic linguistic strictures and is presented as the verbal behavior of the experimentalists as they operate on the data fields produced by their structured behavioral environments.
The rapprochement is described as an interbehavioral approach to operant analysis in that events, their iterations (their reproduceability or replicability), and their successive iterations (the experimental program) form interbehavioral fields in which operant analysts function. When products of experimental analyses become part of the data field for other analysts, an interbehavioral field approach to experimentalists’ behavioral products may be undertaken. Hence, an iterative analysis of these products may allow the establishment of an interbehavioral program by which experimentalists’ studies become self-correcting since each becomes “no more than behavior,” not dissimilar from that which they purport to study.
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