Theories of Child Development Unit 1 3.1 Cypop

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Skinner – Operant Conditioning Operant conditioning is a method of learning that occurs through rewards and punishments for behavior. Through operant conditioning, an association is made between a behavior and a consequence for that behavior. Operant conditioning was coined by behaviorist Skinner, which is why you may occasionally hear it referred to as Skinnerian conditioning. As a behaviorist, Skinner believed that internal thoughts and motivations could not be used to explain behavior. Instead, he suggested, we should look only at the external, observable causes of human behavior. Skinner used the term operant to refer to any "active behavior that operates upon the environment to generate consequences". In other words, Skinner's theory explained how we acquire the range of learned behaviors we exhibit each and every day. Bandura – Social Learning Theory The social learning theory proposed by Albert Bandura has become perhaps the most influential theory of learning and development. While rooted in many of the basic concepts of traditional learning theory, Bandura believed that direct reinforcement could not account for all types of learning. His theory added a social element, arguing that people can learn new information and behaviours by watching other people. Known as observational learning, this type of learning can be used to explain a wide variety of behaviours. Basic Social Learning Concepts There are three core concepts at the heart of social learning theory. First is the idea that people can learn through observation. Next is the idea that internal mental states are an essential part of this process. Finally, this theory recognizes that just because something has been learned, it does not mean that it will result in a change in behaviour. Piaget – Cognitive Development He became intrigued with the reasons children gave for their wrong answers on
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