On cognitive theories and causation in human behavior

Lee, Christina (1992) On cognitive theories and causation in human behavior. Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 23 4: 257-268. doi:10.1016/0005-7916(92)90048-N


Author Lee, Christina
Title On cognitive theories and causation in human behavior
Journal name Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0005-7916
1873-7943
Publication date 1992-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/0005-7916(92)90048-N
Volume 23
Issue 4
Start page 257
End page 268
Total pages 12
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Pergamon
Language eng
Abstract Modern theories of social behavior are based on the largely unquestioned assumption that human activity is determined by cognitive variables. Physiology, environment, and behavior are seen as peripheral to the understanding of cognition, seen as central to the understanding of human nature. This paper argues that these approaches to psychology are essentially metaphorical models of behavior, inadequate as explanatory theories, because they rely on untestable assumptions concerning the centrality to human behavior of hypothetical and unmeasurable cognitive variables. Their lack of precision does not allow for the testing of specific predictions. This paper argues that contemporary cognitive-behavioral and cognitive-social theories cannot be salvaged as explanatory models.
Q-Index Code C1

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
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Created: Wed, 23 Feb 2011, 01:49:33 EST by Christina Lee on behalf of School of Psychology