Behavior and Methods

[From Rick Marken (960610.0930)]

Me:

When I say that behavior IS control, I don't mean that control _explains_
behavior. I mean that what we see as and have been calling "behavior"
(pressing buttons, checking answers, lifting weights, turning knobs) is just
an aspect of the phenomenon of control: a controlled variable, an action that
affects a controlled variable or a visible (and irrelevant) side effect of
controlling a variable.

Jeff Vancouver (960610.1115 EST) --

Right, I do not agree with that.

Could you say why? For example, do you think that some behavior is
caused? Or is some behavior something other than an aspect of control?
If so, what is it?

Your input function for determining if a piece of research is PCT is
not mine. I need to be much more careful. Maybe some day I can
be like you.

To me, PCT research is research that tests PCT. If the research described
in your Psych Bulletin article tests PCT then it's PCT research. I don't
see how conventional IV-DV research can be used to test PCT. But if
you show me an example of such research that does, indeed, test PCT, then
I'll have to admit that you can test PCT using conventional IV-DV
methodology. And then I'll be like you so you won't have to bother trying
to be like me;-)

I cannot reduce all PCT research to the TEST.

Maybe not. But the Test seems to show up, in one way or another,
in all of the PCT research I've done.

It seems to me that you and many on this net do research that does
not involve the TEST.

My research always involves the Test in some way.

Given that we both control for the last word, one of us will need
to reorganize this ECU if we are to stop - you first ;).

I'm not trying to win an argument. I'm trying to teach PCT. I'm
also willing to learn. If there are things about behavior that I
don't understand -- and you seem to think that there are more
holes in my knowledge than I do -- than I want to learn what they
are. In this post here you have made two extremely interesting
suggestions; 1) that not all behavior involves control and 2) that
we don't need to use a variant of The Test to study control processes
(a la PCT). Please help me understand what you mean. Try to treat it
as a teaching rather than a debating problem.

Thanks

Rick

[from Jeff Vancouver 960610.13:40 EST]

[From Rick Marken (960610.0930)]

> When I say that behavior IS control, I don't mean that control _explains_
> behavior. I mean that what we see as and have been calling "behavior"
> (pressing buttons, checking answers, lifting weights, turning knobs) is just
> an aspect of the phenomenon of control: a controlled variable, an action that
> affects a controlled variable or a visible (and irrelevant) side effect of
> controlling a variable.

Jeff Vancouver (960610.1115 EST) --

>Right, I do not agree with that.

Could you say why? For example, do you think that some behavior is
caused? Or is some behavior something other than an aspect of control?
If so, what is it?

Call me an agnostic. I think that behavior is such an amorphis [sp?}
word that I would just as soon not make a blanket statement like yours.
That way, I might be able to talk to someone who uses electrodes to
stimulate "behavior." Anyway, it really does not matter what I think
about all behavior, for I am just interested in certain kinds of
behavior, which I think are controlled (or attempts to control).

we don't need to use a variant of The Test to study control processes
(a la PCT). Please help me understand what you mean. Try to treat it
as a teaching rather than a debating problem.

Read my Psych bull article and then we can talk.

Later

Jeff