Behavioural psychology

Discover what behavioural psychologists study, their role in solving crime and how much they earn.


Why do we, as human beings, do the things we do? Why do we act the way we do? And why are people so different to one another? The study in human behaviour can certainly give us plenty of fascinating insights.


This is behavioural psychology: it's the study of the way our brains influence our behaviours. Behaviourists believe that we're learn our behaviours as we naturally interact with the environment around us - through positive or negative reinforcement, for example.

The psychology of criminal behaviour has become hugely popular, with the CSI franchise and Serial true crime podcast providing a window into a disturbing world. However, it's important to note, that it's not exclusively focused on murder but rather all kinds of crime - including fraud, terrorism and abuse.

Some behaviour psychology focuses on the scientific study of observable behaviour (methodological behaviourism), while others are based on the theory a person's behaviour can be understood by looking at their past and present environment and the experiences within it (radical behaviourism).

Behavioural psychologist personality traits

Our fictional famous behavioural psychologist

Dr. Buddy Rydell (Anger Management)

When a series of unfortunate misunderstandings see Dave Buznik sentenced to attend an anger management program in the appropriately titled comedy movie, Anger Management, he’s assigned to Dr. Buddy Rydell. Dr. Rydell employs as series of unorthodox techniques when working with Dave. One of the more bizarre sees him live and go to work with Dave – a portrayal of behavioural observation that’s hugely exaggerated in the name of comedy.

Your potential behavioural psychology career options

A behavioural psychology salary guide

Someone going into behavioural therapy, for example, can expect to earn anywhere between £26,000 per year and £49,000 per year, according to data collected by Glassdoor.

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