Bandura, Ross and Ross.

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  • to see if aggression is innate or learnt?


  • Children observing an aggresive model will reproduce aggressive acts of model, these acts wont be seen by children who observe non-aggressive models/dont observe a model.
  • Observing non-aggressive/not observing will inhibit aggressive behaviour
  • Children will immitate same-sex models more than opposite sex models
  • Boys more likely to immitate aggressive behaviour than girls 


  • Lab Experimement
  • IV = models behaviour, gender of model, gender or child
  • DV - aggressive behaviour copied?


  • Children aged between 37months and 69 months (aged 3 - 5.75)
  • 36 boys, 36 girls
  • 24 per condition (aggressive, non-aggressive, control)
  • 6 per gender (boys/girls/same-sex model/opposite sex model) per group
  • All went so Stanford Uni Nursery


  • Matched Groups
  • Prior observations at Nursery
  • Rated out of 5 for physical aggression, verbal aggression, aggression towards objects, inhibition behaviour -> Score out of 20 (teachers also gave scores - reliability)


  • 3 Stages
  • Stage 1 = Exposure to Aggression
  • Control = no exposure to behaviour
  • Non-aggressive = individually tested, sit in room painting picture, model comes in, looks at picture, played with tinker toy for 20 minutes (constructing),
  •  Aggressive = same process, model plays with Bobo doll + mallet instead of tinker toy. 
  • Aggressive behaviours: sits on doll, punches nose, hit head with mallet, threw in air, kicked ot around. 
  • Verbal comments: sock him in the nose, kick him (aggressive) and 'he keeps coming for more (non-aggressive) 
  • Repeated for 10 minutes then experimentor comes to take child
  • Stage 2 = Aggression Arousal
  • 2nd room, aimed to frustrate children, in a room with new toys, child becomes engrossed with toy of their choice, child by themselves, once involved in playing told they cant play with toy as 'it is for special children' -> TANTRUMS
  • Stage 3 = Tests for Imitation
  • 3rd room, one way mirror for observer (observer was…




A brilliant outline of Bandura's classic BoBo doll study!

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