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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Behavior or behaviour (see spelling differences) refers to the actions or reactions of an object or organism, usually in relation to the environment. Behavior can be conscious or subconscious, overt or covert, and voluntary or involuntary.


In animals

In animals, behavior is controlled by the endocrine system and the nervous system. The complexity of the behavior of an organism is related to the complexity of its nervous system. Generally, organisms with complex nervous systems have a greater capacity to learn new responses and thus adjust their behavior. Behaviors can be either innate or learned.

In psychology

Human behavior (and that of other organisms and mechanisms) can be common, unusual, acceptable, or unacceptable. Humans evaluate the acceptability of behavior using social norms and regulate behavior by means of social control. In sociology, behavior is considered as having no meaning, being not directed at other people and thus is the most basic human action, although can play a part in diagnosis of disorders such as autism. Animal behavior is studied in comparative psychology, ethology, behavioral ecology and sociobiology.

Behavior became an important construct in early 20th century Psychology with the advent of the paradigm known subsequently as "behaviorism". Behaviorism was a reaction against "faculty" psychology which purported to see into or understand the mind without the benefit of scientific testing. Behaviorism insisted on working only with what can be seen or manipulated and in the early views of John B. Watson, a founder of the field, nothing was inferred as to the nature of the entity that produced the behavior. Subsequent modifications of Watson's perspective and that of "classical conditioning" (see under Ivan Pavlov) led to the rise of operant conditioning or "radical behaviorism," a theory advocated by B.F. Skinner, which took over the academic establishment up through the 1950s and was synonymous with "behaviorism" for many.

For studies on behavior, ethograms are used.

In other fields

Behavior outside of psychology includes physical property and chemical reactions.

Behavior as used in computer science is an anthropomorphic construct that assigns “life” to the activities carried out by a computer, computer application, or computer code in response to stimuli, such as user input. Also, "a behavior" is a reusable block of computer code or script that, when applied to an object (computer science), especially a graphical one, causes it to respond to user input in meaningful patterns or to operate independently. Also, behavior is a value that changes over time [1] (one of the key concepts in functional reactive programming). The term can also be applied to some degree to functions in mathematics, referring to the anatomy of curves.

In environmental modeling and especially in hydrology, a behavioral model means a model that is acceptably consistent with observed natural processes, i.e., that simulates well, for example, observed river discharge. It is a key concept of the so-called Generalized Likelihood Uncertainty Estimation (GLUE) methodology to quantify how uncertain environmental predictions are.

See also


Study guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiversity

See also

Simple English

Behaviour (or behavior) can have two meanings which are related. Basically it means: what an animal or plant does or how it acts.

In biology behaviour is the observed reaction which occurs when an organism is given a stimulus. Some organisms are more complicated than others and may be more aware of their surroundings. If their behaviour is conscious it means that they know what they are doing. If they are not aware of what they are doing this is unconscious behaviour. Humans will pull their hand back without thinking if they accidentally touch something hot. This is done because organisms want to avoid pain and will pull away from the thing that is causing the pain.

Behaviour is linked to the nervous system as well as the endocrine system. It is those systems that react. Behaviour is also linked to learning. Organisms which are more complicated can learn better than those that are simpler. For organisms, learning means that they change their behaviour because they remember having been in that situation before and know how to react.

People often use the word "behaviour" to mean the way people interact with (behave towards) one another. Children are taught what is good behaviour and what is bad behaviour. Good behaviour is about being polite and thoughtful to other people. It is the kind of behaviour that people in a society expect from others.rue:Хованя ся

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