learning approach: social learning theory

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  • learning approach: social learning theory
    • Key Assumptions
      • Learning occurs indirectly
        • Albert Bandura agreed with behaviourists ( learning occurs through experience)
        • Bandura also proposed that learning takes place in social context through observation and imitation
      • Learning related to consequence of behaviour   ( vicarious reinforcemen)
        • Children observe other's behaviour. Take note of consequences
        • Behaviour that is reward = more likely to be copied
        • Behaviour that is punished= less likely to be copied
      • Mediational processes play crucial  role in learning. There are 4 mediational processes in learning...
        • 2. Retention- whether behaviour is remembered
        • 1. Attention - whether behaviour is noticed
        • 3. Motor reproduction - being able to do it
        • 4. Motivation- the will to perform the behaviour
        • 1 & 2- relate to the learning of behaviour.
        • 3& 4 - relate to the performance of behaviour
      • Identification  with role models is improtnant
        • Children are more likely to imitate the behaviour of people with whom they identify
        • Such role models are similar to the observer tend to be attractive and have high status
      • Children model aggressive behaviour
        • Bobo doll studies suggest that children are likey to imitate acts of violence if they observe these in an adult role model
        • Modelling aggressive behaviour = more likely if  behaviour is rewarded - vicarious reinforcement
    • Bandura's research   imitation of aggression
      • Study 1 children watched either...
        • An adult behaving non-aggressively towards a Bobo doll
        • An adult behaving aggressively towards a Bobo doll
          • Given own doll - played more aggressively
      • Study 2 children saw adult who was....
        • rewarded
          • Given own doll - played more aggressively
        • punished
        • received no consequence
    • Evaluation
      • Strengths
        • Accounts for cultural differences in behaviour
          • Shows how children learn from people around them + media - can explain how cultural norms are transmitted
          • Useful to understand range of behaviours ( e.g.  genders)
        • less determinist than the behaviourist approach
          • Emphasise reciprocal determinism - influenced by environment but also exert influence upon it through behaviours we choose to preform
          • Suggests free will in the way we behave
        • Emphasies improtancte of cognitive foctors in learning
          • STL  provides more complete explanation of human learning than behaviourist approach- recognises role of mediational processes
          • Classical or operant conditioning  cant offer comprehensive account of human learning as cognitive factors are omitted
      • Limitations
        • Relies heavily on evidence from controlled lab studies
          • Raises problems of demand ahcarteristics
          • May have thought that hitting the doll was expected as that was the main puroose
        • Underestimated  the influence of biological factors
          • Found that boys more agresive than girls regradlees of specifics of experimentasl condition
          • May be explained by levels of testosterone ( greater present in boys)
  • OR
  • Emphasies improtancte of cognitive foctors in learning
    • STL  provides more complete explanation of human learning than behaviourist approach- recognises role of mediational processes
    • Classical or operant conditioning  cant offer comprehensive account of human learning as cognitive factors are omitted

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