Cognitive Theory Notes Essay

1641 Words7 Pages
Social Cognitive Theory stemmed out of work in the area of social learning theory proposed by N.E. Miller and J. Dollard in 1941. Their proposition posits that if one were motivated to learn a particular behavior, then that particular behavior would be learned through clear observations. By imitating these observed actions the individual observer would solidify that learned action and would be rewarded with positive reinforcement [1] The proposition of social learning was expanded upon and theorized by Canadian psychologist Albert Bandura from 1962 until the present. The theorists most commonly associated with social cognitive theory are Albert Bandura and Walter Mischel. [edit] Overview Social cognitive theory is a learning theory based on the ideas that people learn by watching what others do and that human thought processes are central to understanding personality. While social cognitists agree that there is a fair amount of influence on development generated by learned behavior displayed in the environment in which one grows up, they believe that the individual person (and therefore cognition) is just as important in determining moral development [2]. People learn by observing others, with the environment, behavior, and cognition all as the chief factors in influencing development. These three factors are not static or independent; rather, they are all reciprocal. For example, each behavior witnessed can change a person's way of thinking (cognition). Similarly, the environment one is raised in may influence later behaviors, just as a father's mindset (also cognition) will determine the environment in which his children are raised [2]. [edit] Morality Main article: Social cognitive theory of morality Social cognitive theory emphasizes a large difference between an individual's ability to be morally competent and morally performing. Moral
Open Document