In the following essay I will compare and contrast the works of both Harlow and Skinner when looking into behavior and how both used non-human animals in their research. Harlow was born on 31st October 1905 and named Harry Frederic Israel. His parents were Mabel Rock and Alonzo Harlow Israel and he was the second youngest of four boys. Harlow became an American Psychologist after he achieved his PhD in 1930 and changed his name from Israel to Harlow. Burrhus Frederic Skinner was born on 20th March 1904. He grew up with one brother. His father had his own law firm and his mother was a housewife. Skinner was an American psychologist who accomplished his PhD in 1931 and became Professor of Psychology at Harvard University in 1958.
Both studied non-human animals and they both made the assumptions that the work they were investigating applied across different species. They differed in the explanations they gave for the behaviour they were investigating, but both concluded their findings could also be correlated to the behaviour of humans. I will discuss some of the similarities and differences and I will also consider the extent to which they were able to speculate their findings across animal species.
Comparing Works of Skinner and Harlow
To state the obvious Both Skinner and Harlow conducted experiments with non-human animals, skinners preferred animal species to study were rats and pigeons where as Harlow most famous theory revolved around the experimental research of rhesus monkeys.
Skinner pursued the foundation of behaviourism (also referred to as stimulus-response psychology), which suggested that psychology should only study observable, measurable behaviour. Skinner investigated the observable processes of learning. Learning is said to occur as a result of associations being made between stimulus and responses that didn’t exist before learning takes