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Observational Learning and Cognitive Behavior Modification

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1. Observational Learning and Cognitive Behavior Modification: Thinking about Behavior. (Discuss)

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8. Observational Learning and Cognitive Behavior Modification: Thinking about Behavior.

Now let's look at some information that you can consider for each section of the above outline (see attached response)

Observational (Social) Learning and Cognitive Behavior Modification

This concerns the work of Albert Bandura and Walter Mischel. The main focus is on the social (observation learning) and cognitive aspects of human behavior. There is an emphasis on self-regulation of behavior, thus de-emphasizing the external reinforcers of operant conditioning. It differs from Skinner in that there is an emphasis on Intrinsic Reinforcement and the theory that learning does not require reinforcement. Learning results from observations (the heart of social cognitive theory). Because Bandura and Mischel's theories are similar, they are often taught together.

Major Tenets

1. Mischel's research noted that behaviors are not consistent across time and across situation, and therefore the inner psyche of the individual or the existence of traits do not predict future behaviors well. Freud emphasized person variables, Skinner emphasized situational variables, and Mischel argued for an integrationist approach in which both person variables and situation variables were considered as equal contributors to behavior.
2. Reciprocal determinism is Bandura's term to explain the interaction between the Person (P), the Situation (S), and the Behaviors (B). One's beliefs about the world, and about themselves will influence their behavior and the environments they place themselves in. Feedback from the environment and behaviors will confirm or disconfirm one's beliefs.
3. Person variables are NOT traits, habits or repressed experiences, BUT beliefs, values, and information processing strategies. They are important only in their present manifestation, the "here and now."

According to Mischel, the five social learning person variables are:

1. Competencies: skills, problem-solving strategies, concepts about the world, based on experiences; allows for successful adaptation; Cattell's fluid intelligence; tools for "doing commerce" with the world; one's capabilities.

2. Encoding strategies and personal constructs: attentional strategies and individual schemas: what you pay attention to, and what meaning you attach to the stimulus you attend to; categorization is a personal construct that allows one to understand the world; subjective interpretation; provides some consistency in the person's behavior, although capable of being changed, which accounts for inconsistencies in behavior. One's interpretations

3. Expectancies: behavior outcome expectancies: if I do this, then I can expect that; expectancies ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses behaviorism, observational learning and cognitive behavior modification for a project on thinking about behavior. It provides a full coverage of the theories e.g. assumptions, examples and articles for further reading.