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Rudolf Dreikurs
Born(1897-02-08)February 8, 1897
DiedMay 25, 1972(1972-05-25) (aged 75)
Alma materUniversity of Vienna
Known forIndividual psychology
Scientific career
InfluencesAlfred Adler

Rudolf Dreikurs (February 8, 1897, Vienna – May 25, 1972, Chicago) was an Austrian psychiatrist and educator who developed psychologist Alfred Adler's system of individual psychology into a pragmatic method for understanding the purposes of reprehensible behaviour in children and for stimulating cooperative behaviour without punishment or reward.

He suggested that human misbehavior is the result of feeling a lack of belonging to one's social group. When this happens the child acts from one of four "mistaken goals": undue attention, power, revenge or avoidance (inadequacy). His overall goal was that students would learn to cooperate reasonably without being penalized or rewarded because they would feel that they are valuable contributors to the classroom.

In 1952, Dreikurs organized a group of followers of Adlerian Psychology to found the North American Society of Adlerian Psychology. He was an active leader in the organization until his death[1].


See also


  1. The Courage to Be Imperfect: The Life and Work of Rudolf Dreikurs. Biography by Janet Terner, W.L. Pew. New York 1978.
  2. Rudolf Dreikurs — A Biographical Summary, by Eva Dreikurs Ferguson, copyright 2008. Available from Retrieved October 3, 2022.
  1. ^ "Rudolf Dreikurs". ICASSI. Retrieved 2022-10-03.