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Observational learning (modelling)

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observational learninga type of learning that occurs when a learner watches and replicates the behaviours of a model
it is learning by watching the behaviours and consequences of a model. Bandura’s studiesThis type of learning was described by a Canadian researcher, Albert Bandura, who conducted numerous studies on the capacity of children to learn in this way.
He proposed the social learning theory, meaning that behaviours are learnt by watching and imitating others.

The results of his studies showed that children who were exposed to an aggressive model demonstrated high levels of aggressive behaviour themselves.

ONOBSERVATIONAL LEARNING (MODELLING) SPECIFICALLY FOR YOUFOR ONLY$13. 90/PAGEOrder NowBandura’s studies – 1963 AChildren aged 3-6 years old were divided into groups using the matched-participants experimental design.
the three experimental groups were exposed to
– a real life model
– film of an adult model
– cartoon figure
the two control groups were exposed to
– no model at all
– a passive model

the procedure was as follows:
– exposure to the group’s model
– exposure to a frustrating situation
– taken into a room with a variety of aggressive (bobo doll, mallet) toys and non-aggressive toys (dolls)
– the number of aggressive acts performed by the children was recorded

Bandura’s studies – 1963 A resultsthe children exposed to an aggressive model demonstrated significantly higher levels of aggression than the groups not exposed to an aggressive modelBandura’s studies – 1963 Btwo groups of children were shown a film of two adults, Rocky and Johnny.
– scenario one: Rocky wins, taking all of Johnny’s food and toys
– scenario two: Johnny retaliates and Rocky loses
the control group was not exposed to a film at allBandura’s studies – 1963 B resultsthe children who was Rocky win demonstrated high levels of aggressive behaviour.
children who saw Rocky punished for his aggressive behaviour demonstrated very few aggressive behaviours overallkey elements of observational learningBandura’s studies led him to outline 5 key elements that make up the observational learning process. If one of these processes does not occur, then the learner will not reproduce the behaviour of the model
– Attention
– retention
– reproduction
– motivation
– reinforcementattentionan element of observational learning, where the learner must notice the model’s behaviour and pay attention to it.
In relation to Bandura’s studies; the children noticing the model behaving aggressively towards the bobo dollretentionan element of observational learning, where the learner must retain or store in their memory the behaviour they noticed the model exhibiting in the attention stage.
Example: watching your gran bake a cake and remembering the steps she completed in order to bake the cakereproductionan element of observational learning, where the learner must be capable of imitating the behaviour. Example: being taught how to play tennis, but if you have a broken arm your not going to be able to reproduce the behaviourmotivationan element of observational learning, where the learner must want to reproduce the behaviour. Example: someone trying to teach you to iron but you won’t learn until you have a desire to ironreinforcementthe process of making a behaviour more likely to be repeated in the future because it is followed by a pleasant consequence for the learner.
Reinforcement can be
– External: environmental, provided by someone else
– Self-reinforcement (internal): intrinsic
– Vicarious reinforcement: a process common in observational learning where a pleasant outcome is delivered to the model, having the effect of strengthening the likelihood of the learner replicating the behaviour. No direct experience is necessary.
– Direct: given to the learner themselves as an incentive.

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