Behavioral science is one of the three fields of research that is represented by FBPCS. Like cognitive science, it is a relatively new field of study, gaining traction in the American academic community in the 1950s. It is often described as a multi-discipline subject, but what does that mean? And what is behavioral science?
Broadly speaking, behavioral science primarily covers, and tries to understand human action and behavior in society. To achieve this, it borrows from a number of different scientific disciplines, including anthropology, economics, sociology, psychology, political sciences, psychiatry, geography, and the behavioral aspects of biology. It is often confused with the social sciences, but behavioral science has a more experimental and research based approach, when compared to the older scientific discipline.
The behavioral sciences investigate human (or animal) behavior through controlled observation and scientific experimentation. Empirical data is collected to investigate the interaction, communication, and decision-making process between humans and their environment and social system. To understand these relationships between humans and their environment, behavioral scientists will look to cognitive science, social neuroscience, and psychology, amongst other sub-sciences.
There are two main sub-divisions to behavioral science, they are:
- Relational Science – This is the more social side of the behavioral sciences, dealing with interactions, communications, relationships, relational strategies, and the dynamics between individual in a social system.
- Information Science – This covers the neural side of behavioral science, looking at reactions to environmental stimuli and the resultant processing of information. This information processing by individuals within the social environment, it what allows decision making, judgement, and perception. It is critical for the survival of an individual within their social environment.
This is just a brief overview of the extremely interesting field of behavioral science. It is an area of study that has many applications in both the everyday life of an individual, as well as within the business world. To learn more about behavioral science, or how it can be applied to the likes of media psychology and consumer, there are many great resources available online.