Behavioral Theories of Learning Dr. Jennifer Irwin EDU 620: Module 5 Chapter 5
What would it take?You are currently enrolled in my educational psychology class. As your instructor, I ask you to spend one hour this week tutoring two classmates who are having difficulty understanding the course material. You have no other commitments for that hour, but you’d rather spend the time at the coffee shop with your friends.
What would it take?What would it take for you to spend the hour tutoring your classmates instead of joining your friends?q Would you do it to gain my approval?q Would you do it simply because it made you feel good to help someone else?q Would you do it for a free cup of coffee?q Would you do it if I gave you twenty dollars?
What would it take?Now, a few weeks later, I ask you to spend the weekend (8 hours a day Sat. and Sun.) tutoring the same two struggling students. What would it take this time?q Would my approval do the trick? Cup of coffee? Twenty dollars? Five hundred dollars? Or would your internal sense of satisfaction be enough?
Pleasure v. Painq It has been said that everything we do in life is to either “gain pleasure” or “avoid pain”.q Look at the following list and categorize the events as one or the other or both:
Pleasure v. Pain• coming to class• going to work• going to the movies with a friend• attending a seminar on financial aid• working on a hobby• eating• sleeping• others?
Keep these questions in mind as we dive into the topic of . . .. . . Behaviorism (the first learning theory of many that we will discuss)
The Sea of Theories...q Behavioral - observable behaviorsq Cognitive - mental processesq Constructivist - cognitive construction of knowledge
Behavior and Learningq Students are always learningq Our challenge is to get them to learn specific informationq But, what exactly is learning?
What is Learning?q Simply put . . . Learning = CHANGEq It is a change in the individual caused by some experienceq Think of things you have learned.q These can be intentional (like taking a class) or accidental (like a fear of dogs)
Basic Assumptions of Behaviorismq Learning is described in terms of relationships among observable events (stimuli and responses).q Learning is most likely to take place when stimuli and responses occur close together in time.(See cartoon on next slide)
Basic Assumptions of Behaviorism (cont.)q People’s behaviors are largely the results of experiences in their environment.q Learning involves a behavior change.q Many species of animals (including humans) learn in similar ways.
Gurus of BehaviorismIvan Pavlov E. L. Thorndike B. F. Skinner
Ivan Pavlovq Think dogs, bells, food, and salivaq Classical Conditioning
Conditioning happens... when you take twoobjects or actions that have nothing to do with each other and you make behaviorshappen (like in the next cartoon)
Next guru: E. L. Thorndikeq Takes Pavlov’s ideas one step furtherq “The Law of Effect”q If an act is followed by a satisfying change in the environment, then the likelihood that the act will be repeated in similar situations increases.q The reverse is true, too. Unsatisfying change leads to decrease of behavior.
An Example...If going to school is a attendance increasesgood experience . . . the opposite is also true
Pause, practice & apply Write down a personal example forClassical Conditioning and the Law of Effect
The man, the legend: B. F. Skinnerq Operant Conditioningq Ideas based on the use of pleasant & unpleasant consequences to control behaviorq Think mice
The Skinner Box Or, from the mouse’s perspective . . .
Operant Conditioning… The consequences ofone’s present behavior plays a major role in determining one’s future behavior
If you haven’t done so already, print out the study guide for chapter 5.You can use the rest of the PowerPoint as well as the text to complete it.
Reinforcersq Reinforcer – Any consequence that strengthens behaviorq Primary – satisfy basic needsq Secondary – value determined by societyq Positive – pleasurable consequence • Premack Principleq Negative – release from unpleasant activity/situation
Punishersq Punisher – unpleasant consequence that weakens behaviorq Presentation Punishment – presentation of unpleasant consequence to weaken behavior.q Removal Punishment – Removal of desired consequence to weaken behavior. • Time out – Removing student from a situation in which misbehavior is being reinforced or strengthened
Most “true” behaviorists…. Use reinforcement over punishment Why?
Other terms to know…q Shapingq Extinction PLEASE CHECKq Extinction burst OUR TEXTBOOKq Cueing FOR DEFINITIONSq Discrimination AND EXAMPLESq Generalization
Schedules of reinforcement q Fixed ratio schedule q Variable ratio schedule q Fixed interval q Variable interval
Social Learning Theoryq Grew out of behaviorismq Accepts most principles of behaviorism, but focuses on cueing and internal mental processes (i.e. giving people credit for thinking and not being influenced solely by their environment)
Social Learning Theoryq Developed by Albert Banduraq Also known for the concept of self- efficacy (in chapter 10)By the way, for my dissertation I researched self-efficacy. I wrote to Bandura(who is at Stanford now) . . . and he wrote back! What a nice guy!
Basic Assumptions of Social Learning Theoryq People can learn by observing others.q Example: watching the correct way to swing a tennis racket
Basic Assumptions of Social Learning Theoryq Learning is an internal process that may or may not result in a behavior changeq Example: you won’t demonstrate that you’ve learned how to apologize tactfully until a later time when an apology is necessary
Basic Assumptions of Social Learning Theoryq Behavior is directed toward particular goals.q Example: students are taking your class to meet a graduation requirement
Basic Assumptions of Social Learning Theoryq Behavior eventually becomes self- regulated.q Example: a student who observes, practices, and self-corrects when learning how to play an instrument (as opposed to the behaviorist view that we only do things because we are shaped by external influences)
Basic Assumptions of Social Learning Theoryq Reinforcement and punishment have indirect rather than direct effects on learning.q Example: I can learn what NOT to do by watching a classmate be reprimanded by the teacher
Pause, practice, & applyWhich theory do you think makes the most sense in a classroom situation? • Behaviorism OR • Social Learning Theory
Any questions?For clarification or additional information, please review chapter 5, ask a classmate or contact the instructor