Learning Theories

Olivia De Leon
EDTC 3320
Professor Matthew Crosslin
Behaviorism and cognitive are two psychological perspectives
that have had an impact and dominated adult
education/training program.
These two different perspectives are major approaches to how
people learn.
Behaviorism is defined as a change in behavior from
a result of an experience. Is a behavior that can be
measured and observed.
Behaviorism is observable changes in behavior.
Learning is the result of changes in behavior.
Human learning and behavior is controlled by
Behavioral theorists believe that human
behavior is learned through
observation. Theorists agree that
behavior is represented by learned
A theorist that agree with this approach is
Ivan. P. Pavlov who is a Russian scientist.
Pavlov develop a classical conditioning
analysis model to describe this type of
Pavlov developed the classical conditioning model. Classical
conditioning is the emotional and psychological responses to
stimuli. Behavior is controlled by association.
He experimented this approach with dogs. The results were as
Before conditioning, bell
Bell + meat placed in front
initiated salivation
The bell alone produced no response but when salivation initiated
produce response to bell.
Behaviorism Theory Today
Who uses this theory now a days? Most adults need this method to
successfully master a lesson. For example driving for someone who already knows
how to drive is simple but imagine an adult trying to learn how to drive. Many
people have to go thru virtualized driving schools to effectively learn how to drive.
They have to see so they can follow. Even when using new technology most
teenagers and adults go to popular web sites like youtube.com to see how things
work so they can reproduce the action. As you can see this method of “show and
follow” is essential for many citizens to succeed.
Cognitivism is learning through repetition.
Cognitivism evolved replacing behaviorism perspective.
Cognitivists agree that learning is through active participation.
“The mind works in the same way as a computer.”
Information comes in, then is processed, leads to results.
Cognitivists agree that for something to learned, there must be
an opportunity to practice and then develop solutions.
To be able to learn attitudes, first the learner must be exposed
to models or arguments.
R. Gagne agree and was a contributor to this approach.
He was well-known for his stimulus-response theory.
Gagne believe that cognitivism meaning
is the ability to control the individual’s
behavior to learn, remember and think.
He believed that internal and external conditions are important
to break down humans’ learned capabilities.
Internal= information learned prior to instruction
External=instruction provided to the learner. It deals with
stimuli that is presented externally to the learner.
The act of repeating the main idea to learn the main point of a instructional
segment is still used today. Many instructors and teachers in school districts use this method
especially when dealing with adults. For example, at United Independent School District in
Laredo Tx. We have a time management device called the Kronos in order for the adult staff to
successfully punch every morning they had to be trained repeatedly. Some of them understood
the method rather quickly but most of them need the Cognitive Method to be successful.
Bustamante, L., Howe-Tennant, D., & Ramo, C. (n.d.). Behaviorism Approach . SUNY
Cortland - Faculty and Staff Web Services. Retrieved June 24, 2011
Corry, M. (n.d.). Gagne's Theory of Instruction. home.gwu.edu. Retrieved June 25,
2011 from http://home.gwu.edu/~mcorry/corry1.htm
Mergel, B. (n.d.). Learning Theories of Instructional Design. University of
Saskatchewan. Retrieved June 25, 2011 from
Outline of Educational Learning Theories and Theorists. (n.d.). Educational Learning
Theories and Theorists. Retrieved June 25, 2011 from

similar documents