Although behaviorism is a widely rejected theory, it has some strengths. Unlike other theories of mind that can’t be measured, it is easier to collect data and conduct experiments with behaviorism. Psychological behaviorism has contributed to scientific understanding such as, Jane Goodall’s research for understanding chimpanzees and Watson’s research on conditioning.
Behaviorists such as Watson have used experiments to explain how human beings can have phobias. Another strength is reinforcement of punishments and reward can influence and control a person’s behavior. For example, alcoholics are taught to associate alcohol with something horrible in their life.
Unlike logical behaviorism, psychological behaviorism has been a helpful theory in both science and medicine. The aspect that people seem to be attracted to is how it uses people’s behavior to shape their lives. One philosophical behaviorism advantage is: it solves Rene Descartes’ problems of the duality of mind and body by denying mental states. Ryle explains how Rene Descartes’ theory Cartesian dualism is a categorical mistake because he claims mind and body are separate, but doesn’t explain how and lumps mental states into one category.
His argument of categorical mistake motivates behaviorism because they solve Descartes’ problem, by claiming mental substance are insignificant for understanding behavior.1 The mind is just there to show the behavior; it helps create an adequate behavior. For example, if I break my hand the pain I experience can be entirely seen from my behavior. Although, people can have different pain tolerance.
The aspect of logical behaviorism that is strong is how it uses behavior to understand a person. Overall though, logical behaviorism does not have a lot of strengths, since the theory is solely on focused on internal states 1 “Behaviorists and Behaviorisms.” Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Accessed December 21, 2017. http://www.iep.utm.edu/behavior/.