The Behavior Analyst

, Volume 19, Issue 1, pp 105–108 | Cite as

Commentary on Watkins (1990): There Are Other Solutions to the Problem of Proliferating Memory Theories

  • Timothy A. Salthouse
Article

Summary

To summarize, I agree with Watkins (1990) that there has been a problem of too many theories and too few constraints in contemporary research in memory and cognition, but I disagree as to the source of the problem or its likely solution. Any discipline should evolve, and in the process establish linkages with related disciplines. Those other disciplines can then be a valuable source of constraints on theories, and can also provide powerful new sets of methodological or analytical tools. It remains to be seen whether those constraints and tools will be effectively employed in the field of memory research, but the fact that they exist and are starting to be recognized suggests that Watkins’ (1990) prognosis may be too pessimistic.

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References

  1. Anderson, J. R. (1983). The architecture of cognition. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Newell, A. (1990). Unified theories of cognition. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Watkins, M. J. (1990). Mediationism and the obfuscation of memory. American Psychologist, 45, 328–335.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Association for Behavior Analysis International 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Timothy A. Salthouse
    • 1
  1. 1.School of PsychologyGeorgia Institute of TechnologyAtlantaUSA

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