Behavior analysts take the position that prediction and control constitute the goals of science. This assumption has resulted in descriptive operations being overlooked and misunderstood. Among the most serious of these misunderstandings is the confusion of events with descriptive constructions. Confusion is likely when the events described present problems of observation, when they appear to resemble our descriptions of them, and when they are taken to be synonymous with our reactions to them. Examples of confusing events with their descriptions are examined in the context of the radical behavioral interpretation of causality, along with their implications for a scientific understanding. An alternative interpretation of causal knowledge is suggested.
Hayes, Linda J.; Adams, Mark A.; and Dixon, Mark R.
"Causal Constructs and Conceptual Confusions,"
The Psychological Record:
1, Article 6.
Available at: http://opensiuc.lib.siu.edu/tpr/vol47/iss1/6