Essay Outline And Evaluate One Or More Social Psychological Theories Of Aggression

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Outline and evaluate one or more social psychological theories of aggression? The social learning theory suggests that children learn aggressive behaviour from other significant individuals acting aggressively. A way in which children learn is called vicarious reinforcement and it’s when someone is rewarded for being aggressive. As a result they also act aggressively when reward follows however they will also learn not to act aggressively when punishment will be a consequence of their actions. In order for social learning to take place, the child must form a metal representation of the behaviour he/she observed. So if the opportunity for aggressive behaviour to arise in the future, the child will display the aggression if the rewards outweigh the punishments. Furthermore social learning theory is supported by Bandura et al who conduc6ted and experiment on young children who observed a model being aggressive to a bobo…show more content…
The study is also limited because it only focuses on aggression on a doll as appose to real life situation which means that the results cannot be generalized. Furthermore a real life clown was used and the children showed the same levels of aggression towards it as well which shows that SLT does apply to violence towards other people. The strengths of this theory is that it can be used to explain aggression in the absences of direct reinforcement because if the children were never directly reinforced for their own aggressive behaviour, the consequence of vicarious reinforcement is necessary to explain their actions. There are also ethical issues related to this study and they make SLT difficult to test experimentally since its considered unethical to expose children to aggressive behaviour with the knowledge that they may then imitate those acts in their own
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