Key contributors to the theory
Ivan Pavlov conditioned dogs to salivate when he rang a bell, a process
later termed classic conditioning.
B. F. Skinner experimented with pigeons and as they behaved in a desired
manner he rewarded them, a process later termed operant conditioning.
Albert Bandura believes that through observation of others and imitation
people acquire behaviors, a theory called observational modelling.
What does behaviorism state?
Behaviorism operates on the principle of "stimulus-response".
Classic conditioning, which was explored by Pavlov is the process of reflex
learning. An unconditioned stimulus (food) was offered to a dog with a
conditioned stimulus (ringing of a bell) in such a way that salivation was
eventually produced on the presentation of the conditioned stimulus
alone. This learning is by association.
Operant conditioning, investigated by Skinner is when behavior is being
shaped by positive reinforcement.
What is operational modelling?
Operational modelling is when you watch something and then mimick the
Albert Bandura was a behaviorist who focused on the factors that
motivated and contributed to a persons behavior.
Role of the
Provide stimulus material that prompts the
Teacher facilitates and motivates student
Reinforcement of positive outcome
through good grades or encouraging
remarks and negative outcome through
bad grades and some form of
With technology a teacher may allow the
use of computer games as positive
Students in a Behaviorist's Classroom
Hard work to receive rewards, good grades, or positive remarks
Repetitive learning and establishing a routine
Solid knowledge of teacher expectation
Utilizing software programs that provide positive feedback for correct
Behaviorism in my classroom
There are forms of behaviorism I would apply in my classroom. As an
instructor I believe positive reinforcement is one of the best ways to achieve
motivation from students. As a math teacher, it's essential to provide an
environment where students will observe and imitate the correct way of
In opposition, I wouldn't use this theory solely as I would prefer a more indepth learning experience for my students aside from learning through