Book Review: The Nurture Effect - Anthony Bigland
This was one book I was very keen to read. A lot of people had been talking about it online, and it seemed very much in line with the type of book I like to read.
I think it would be good to go back and re-read, maybe in a few months. Overall, it was a good book to read, mainly about society, and the world at large, very much in line with a behaviourist’s thinking. However I did feel it was very specifically aimed more so at American audiences, than anywhere else in the world, and feel like it could have investigated different things, different countries are doing around the world, to help with social issues, such as poverty, homelessness, domestic violence, education, and health.
In saying that, I think it is a text that can very easily be understood by anyone that picks up the book, and relay the principles of applied behaviour analysis, and how we can use those principles to make positive changes in everyday life.
I particularly like how at the end of each chapter, there were points to help explain what the reader could do, at an individual level, at the local community level, and at the national level. These were pretty straightforward, practical ideas, that anyone could do, to help start the change.
I also like how there were a few chapters related to things I am very fond of. Particularly the chapter on Direct Instruction, and how implementing evidence-based practices in classrooms can make a huge difference in children’s lives.
I did also like the part about the Triple P Positive Parenting Program, which has come out of Queensland, Australia. The way it has been delivered and used by families around the country, and the world, is highly impressive. This dissemination of information (effective, evidence-based information) is what we need to focus on and figure out ways to get the correct information across to people, and teach them how to look beyond the initial flashy introduction, and think critically about what information is being presented to them.
Some other parts of the book which fit into this particular theme include the part about families overthrowing the tobacco industry and its advertising campaigns. Very inspiring read, and gave me lots of ideas about pseudo-science and how we could potentially approach it in a more successful way.
I think it is definitely well worth a read, not just for behaviour analysts, but people who are interested in social welfare.