Essay on Unit 8 P1

2554 Words Jul 17th, 2015 11 Pages
The Behaviourist Perspective
The behaviourist perspective which psychologists used to explain all human behaviour came from two main authorities Ivan Pavlov (1849-1936) and Burrhus Frederic Skinner (1904-1990). Both Pavlov and Skinner believed that all types of behaviour were as a result of the learning process. This process of learned behaviour includes personality traits, like confidence, shyness, optimism, pessimism, happiness and depression. Pavlov’s theory of learning is called classic conditioning. In his work with dogs, he attaches monitors to the dog’s mouths and stomachs so he could look at the production rate of saliva so that he could understand their digestive systems. During his work one of his assistants brought some food
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Initially when first out in the box the rat ran round sniffing the different parts and pressed the lever which released the food pellet without intention. After continuing to run around the box for some time and repeating the same action, the rat learned that by pressing the lever the food pellet would be released automatically. As the rat likes food pellets, it would keep repeating the process to gain more food. This process of reinforcement had a positive effect on the rat however, a similar experiment can have a negative effect. To test the negative reinforcement theory, Skinner ran a low electrical current across the base of the box and when the rat pressed the lever, the current was stopped so the rat did not feel pain. Over time the rat learned that by pressing the lever, the result took away the negative reinforcement i.e. pain.
An example of this theory could be demonstrated in a nursery situation where each child is given stars based on the amount of time they sat quietly and listened to the story. Each child would receive a star but those that sat longest would receive more stars. At the end of each week the number of stars each child had gained was then replaced with a treat, perhaps free play outside or fruit pieces.

Social Learning Theory
Social learning theory demonstrates how our social

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