Social psychological approaches to explaining aggression: social learning theory

HideShow resource information
Preview of Social psychological approaches to explaining aggression: social learning theory

First 382 words of the document:

Psychology revision unit 3 (aggression)
Social psychological approaches to explaining aggression- social learning theory
This states that when a child observes a role model behaving aggressively, the
child will see that the role model gets vicarious reinforcement be being rewarded
or by not being punished. This child then develops a mental representation that
aggression is good as you get rewarded for it. The child then copies the behaviour
to get direct experience and then gets positive reinforcement by being rewarded
or not punished. This leads to the child developing a good self efficacy by
becoming more aggressive.
Bandura: bobo doll study
Looked at 48 children in America in 2 groups of either non aggressive or
aggressive conditions. The children played with some toys for 1 minute and then
observed a role model playing with the toys for 10 minutes. The role model was
either aggressive or non aggressive. The toys were then taken away to frustrate
the children. The children were later able to play with the toys again and were
observed for 20 minutes.
Found that 80% of the children in the aggressive group directly copied the
aggressive behaviour and they then became aggressive in their own way. There was
no difference between boys or girls and whether the gender of the role model was
male or female.
This supports the theory as it supports the ideas of observation, role models and
self efficacy. However, without the variations it doesn't support the theory.
Several variations of this study included the role model being presented on TV and
the children were still found to be as aggressive. This supports the idea that
aggression on TV can be influential.
The role model was also either punished or rewarded. They found that if the role
model was punished then the children were less likely to be aggressive. This
supports direct experience and vicarious reinforcement.
Also when the child was either punished or rewarded aggression was highest when
rewarded and lower when punished which supports positive reinforcement and
direct experience.
When these variations are included the study supports all areas of the

Other pages in this set

Page 2

Preview of page 2

Here's a taster:

Psychology revision unit 3 (aggression)
/ The Bobo doll was designed to be hit so aggressive behaviour should be
expected. However the doll was replaced by a human clown and the children
were still aggressive, proving the behaviour wasn't just because of the doll.
Children were frustrated and the theory doesn't explain why they need to
be frustrated to be aggressive. This means that other factors other than
role models influence aggression.…read more


No comments have yet been made

Similar Psychology resources:

See all Psychology resources »See all resources »