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A Theory of Learning

Behaviourism

Psychological theory of response to stimulus

Concerned with external environment

Edward L. Thorndike's "Law of Effect" and John B. Watson's "Methodological Behaviourism"
Pavlov!

Connection to Education?

B.F. Skinner: "The Behaviour of Organisms"

Launches the theory of "Operant Conditioning"

Operant conditioning: stimuli that are present when a behaviour is either rewarded or penalised, can be used to control that behaviour. This is a process of LEARNING!

Behaviourism: A Theory of Learning

Knowledge is a repertoire of behavioral responses to environmental stimuli;
Learning is passive - students absorb a pre-defined body of knowledge;
Motivation is extrinsic - repetition and drills, rote learning
Teaching correct behavioural responses that are absorbed by the students.

Criticism?

The mind as a blank slate or tabula rasa

Teacher-centred view

Learner's mental process disregarded

Behavourism has been over-interpreted!

John Dewey (1859 - 1952) already knew learning is a social, interactive process

B.F. Skinner suggested thinking and feeling can also be conditioned...

..."Radical Behaviourism"

References

Skinner, B.F. (1938). The behavior of organisms: an experimental analysis. Oxford, England: Appleton-Century.

Stewart M. (2012). Understanding learning: theories and critique in Hunt L, Chalmers D (Eds) University teaching in focus: a learning centred approach, London, Routledge.

Created By
Lyle Gurrin
Appreciate

Credits:

Created with images by GoodIdeas - "Behaviorism complex like a puzzle - pictured as word Behaviorism on a puzzle pieces to show that Behaviorism can be difficult and needs cooperating pieces that fit together, 3d illustration" • Aaron Burden - "Hornet eating flower" • Kelly Sikkema - "Grid notebook and Muji pen" • K. Mitch Hodge - "Marble sculpture of Galileo Galilei contemplating the nature of the universe Nov., 2019). "