Edward Chance Tolman made many significant findings to the studies of learning , memory and motivation. By today's standards he would be considered a behaviorist. “He is best remembered for being a pioneer in cognitive psychology during a time when behaviorists dominated the field. Tolman made several significant contributions to the field of psychology. At Berkeley University he created a cognitive theory of learning, which became his trademark to the field. He thought of learning as developing from bits of knowledge and cognition about the environment and how the organism relates to it “(Kimble et al, 1991).
Tolman's experiment questions whether complex internal cognitive activity occurs in an organism, whether these mental processes could be studied without observing them directly. He hypothesized that because humans live in an environment full of obstacles,tools and paths, he theorize that humans must be using those things in a purposive way. He used rats in his experimentation because he believed that rats have a type of stimulus response system akin to humans. to explain that organisms are capable of creating useful cognitive maps. His aim was to observe the complexity of those cognitive maps, and to indicate the significance of these findings on rats for the behavior of humans. Tolman's version of behaviorism emphasized the relationships between stimuli and the organism rather than stimulus-response. Instead of an SR (Stimulus-Response) theory, Tolman pioneered the SOR (Stimulus-Organism-Response) theory. This theory states that a behavior is initiated by things from within the organism's environment
According to Tolman, a new stimulus or sign becomes associated with already mea...
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...ter, even when it doesn't afford us any immediate gain.
Edward C. Tolman. (n.d.)., from www.a2zpsychology.com Web site: http://www.a2zpsychology.com/great_psychologists/edward_c_tolman.htm.
Kimble, G.A., Wertheimer, M., & White, Charlotte L. (Eds.) (1991). Portraits of Pioneers in Psychology. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.
Learning Theories A-Z by David C. Leonard pg 131,2002.
Tolman, E.C. (1922). A New Formula for Behaviorism. Psychological Review, 29, 44-53. [available at http://psychclassics.yorku.ca/Tolman/formula.htm ]
Tolman, E.C. (1948). Cognitive maps in Rats and Men. Psychological Review, 55, 189-208.
White, S. (n.d.). Watson, Skinner & Tolman: their contributions to psychology . Retrieved from http://www.articlesbase.com/history-articles/watson-skinner-tolman-their-contributions-to-
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