the complex ability both to emit behaviors which are reinforced and not to emit behaviors that are punished or extinguished by others. These behaviors may include overt behaviors (e.g., turn-taking) and covert behaviors (e.g., ability to empathize with another person and discriminate social cues).
a commonplace assumption nowadays, but the idea that social interaction and social life more generally could be viewed as involving a set of skills which were similar to workplace skills was initially controversial. Like all skills, the hallmark of social skill is smooth progression toward a goal. As with other workplace skills they have a cognitive and behavioural component. These involve constructing effective ‘models' of the environment (essentially other people) and developing sets of behavioural routines. Courses enhancing social skills (communicating, listening, self-assertion, negotiation, and counselling) are now central features of workplace development.