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24 April in the History of Psychology

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On April 24:

1775 — Jean Itard was born. Itard's interest in special education began with the study of Victor, the "Wild Boy of Aveyron," and led to work with deaf persons. His individualized methods form the basis of modern special education techniques.

1883 — Stanley D. Porteus was born. Porteus was the first practicing psychologist in Australia. His Porteus Maze Test, developed for testing children with mental retardation, was one of the first attempts at a nonverbal test of practical intelligence.

1885 — Alexander Bain toured Wilhelm Wundt's laboratory at the University of Leipzig. James McKeen Cattell, a graduate student at the time, was also present.

1905 — John P. Seward was born. Seward's contributions included research on the habituation of the galvanic skin response, learning, tertiary conditioning, brain stimulation, reproductive behavior, gender differences in behavior and socialization, and the effects of hormones on behavior.

1926 — John T. Lanzetta was born. Lanzetta was an experimental social psychologist who studied group performance, imitation, postdecisional information seeking, and emotional expressivity at various times in his career.

1926 — Charles W. Thomas II was born. Thomas was a cofounder of the Association of Black Psychologists (1968). His work focused on the importance of racial factors in human interactions, with special attention given to the positive aspects of the African American experience and to the effects of racism in psychotherapy.

1957 — Robert Sears, Eleanor Maccoby, and Kurt Lewin's book Patterns of Child Rearing was published.

1962 — The first issue of the journal Family Process was published. This journal has been cited as the first journal in the field of family psychology. Family Process was founded by Don D. Jackson and Nathan W. Ackerman and was published by the Mental Research Institute and the Family Institute.

1967 — The state of Alaska approved its psychologist licensure law. The law became effective on July 1, 1967. In 1980, a state audit of the board of psychology examiners resulted in criticism of the board and the licensure law. In response to "sunset" legislation, the law was granted only a 2-year renewal. Eventual improvements led to the long-term reinstatement of the licensure law.

1974 — Sandra L. Bem's article "The Measurement of Psychological Androgyny" was published by the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology. By 1981, this article had been cited in over 525 other publications and was chosen as a "citation classic" by the journal Current Contents.

1975 — U.S. Representative John Conlan (R-AZ) attacked "Man, A Course of Study" (MACOS), a federally funded fifth-grade social science curriculum developed by Jerome Bruner and John Bare that included coverage of non-Western cultures. Representative Conlan charged that MACOS "brainwashes children with a dishonest view of man," and the MACOS grant was eventually canceled.

1976 — Entered this day in B. F. Skinner's notebook: "We know about our behavior but not about its causes. Hence we believe that we cause it. But we do not always seem to be causing it and hence the belief in the unconscious: We behave because of causes which we do not know about."

1978 — The South Dakota Psychological Association was incorporated.