Behaviour Change

PROPAGANDA FOR CHANGE is a project created by the students of Behaviour Change (ps359) and Professor Thomas Hills at the Psychology Department of the University of Warwick. This work was supported by funding from Warwick's Institute for Advanced Teaching and Learning.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Bring in the heavies


So its take me 30 years, 18 years of education and multiples jobs ranging from bar maid to contracts manager. But I’ve done it, I’ve finally decided on my vocation. I’m going to be a Bouncer, doorman, cooler, Heavie!! 

Slight problem I’m 5’4 50kg and I don’t have a skinhead and although I can be slightly moody. I don’t think I have the usual demeanour employed by those in this industry to intimidate and ultimately change the behaviour of Saturday night’s drunken hooligans.  Turns out I don’t need to, All I need to-do is understand Behavioural analysis….Sorted!

Thorndikes (1927) Law of effect states that the probability of a behaviour happening is a function of the consequences that that behaviour has had.  This is the first rule learnt in Bouncer school. If you pull someone about their bad behaviour, show um the fist or even give them a little dig. They wont behave badly again.

Another technique would be to socially embarrass someone who isn’t dressed to my clubs standards. I would give them some verbal insulting their clothes. Then in the future they would feel anxious about entering my club and would dress correctly (Hiedenreich et al, 2007).

Finally I would reinforce the correct behaviour with reward (skinner, 1938). So if you dressed cool, stood in line correctly and were not a drunken hooligan. I would reward you with a free drink so that you later became one?? Or maybe free entry to the club would be a better option.

So who would have thought that being a heavie would involve so much psychological understanding? It least my degree will come into use for something.



Hiedenreich., B. (2007). An Introduction to Positive Reinforcement and Its Benfits. Journal of Exotic Pet Medicine, 16, 19 -23.

Skinner, B. F. (1938). The Behaviour of Organisms: An Experimental Analysis. New York: Appleton-Century.

Thorndike, E. L. (1927). The Law of Effect. The American Journal of Psychology, 39, 212-222.

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