World Behavior Analysis Day is annually observed on March 20. It is a day to reflect on our behavior and consider what motivates us to act as we do. Behavior analysis investigates the biological, experiential, and pharmacological influences on human behavior. Analysts have found the study of behavior analysis helpful in addressing socially significant behaviors such as healthy eating, substance use, education, and the treatment of developmental disabilities such as autism and Asperger’s. The purpose of behavior analysis is to enhance what functions well and eliminate undesirable behaviors.
The background of World Behavior Analysis Day
The day formerly known as National Behavior Analysis Day has been renamed World Behavior Analysis Day in order to recognize the science behind behavior analysis on a global scale. The 20th of March was designated to commemorate the birth of B.F. Skinner, the founder of contemporary behavior analysis. Skinner was a psychologist and behaviorist who theorized that changes in behavior result from an individual’s response to the occurrence of environmental events. An individual is conditioned to respond in a particular manner to events when a particular stimulus-response pattern is reinforced.
Ivan Pavlov is another important figure in the history of Behavior analysis. In addition to being a psychologist, he was well-known for teaching canines to salivate in response to arbitrary stimuli. Applied behavior analysis (A.B.A.) is a subset of behavior analysis that employs scientific methods to devise procedures that result in observable changes in behavior.
The origin of A.B.A. can be traced to Teodoro Ayllon and Jack Micheal’s 1959 study, “The psychiatric nurse as a behavioral engineer,” published in “The Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior.” Michael and Ayllon were teaching the nurses and staff at a psychiatric hospital how to implement a token economy for patients with schizophrenia and intellectual disability using the principles of operant conditioning. In 1968, this prompted researchers from the University of Kansas to launch the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis (JABA).
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The brain is composed of 73% water and weighs just three pounds.
On average, cognitive decline begins around age 24.
The average human has a shorter attention span than a goldfish, clocking in at 12 minutes.
As early as four months into gestation, a fetus develops a memory.
The brain consumes approximately 20% of the total oxygen in the body.
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