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Behaviorist And Constructivist Learning Theory

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Discuss about the Behaviorist and Constructivist Learning Theory.



The approach of learning is based on what we use and what we find things happen in the environment. Theories assist in explaining the best approaches which learners can used to get full knowledge form their instructors (Kim, 2014). The behaviors of a student determine what he or she can learn from the environment. The teaching methods of Behaviorist have a tendency to depend on drill and skill exercises to offer the steady repeat important for successful reinforcement of feedback patterns. However, the mental models assist physical and cognitive relations with artifacts, environment and even other people. Individual mental models are framed by individual’s attributes, professionals in diverse domains and their beliefs (Burton et al., 2015). Social cognitive theory, mental models and social behaviorism theory are addressed in the essay on how they can best assist students to learn in class and even in outside class.

 It is based on the fact that students learn by observing what other people are doing. Individuals can observe a conduct presented by others, and then replicate those deeds. This is frequently portrayed via modeling of behaviors.   When individuals see victorious exhibition of a behavior, also they can successfully complete the behavior. The learned behaviors can focus on the individual’s personality. Individuals learn through looking what others are doing with environment, cognition and behavior (Burton et al., 2015). All are main factors in influencing the development in a reciprocal triadic association. The behavior which is witnessed by the learner can change the way he or she thinks and the surrounding which one is raised have an influence in future behaviors (Young et al.,2016). For a student, it means that what we observed in school and all the surroundings we live assist us in learning new things.

However, what our instructors do is also students learning platforms. The practical done by instructors assist us to learn principles of the course being taught (Cheng, & Chu, 2014). In addition, for most of the students who are raised in cities, it is better for them to grasp current ideas as compared to those who are not (Lent, & Brown, 2013). This is because rural and urban areas are different places which have different experiences. For instance, a learner in urban areas can easily know what a car is because lots of cars are found in cities contrary to a learner who is at rural areas where a car is rare to cross.  In addition, for different language speakers, an African child raised in America will quickly understands English than the one raised in Africa. Even in future, the language accent of the two children will be different due to the two different environments. However, this theory does not offer a full clarification of how social cognition, behavior, environment, and personality are linked (Conklin, et al., 2013). Due of this, it can be hard to measure the consequence that social cognition has on development.


Behaviorist theory

When seen from the behaviorist viewpoint, the movement of ideas from instructor to student is fundamentally the transfer of the feedback suitable to some stimulus. Consequently, education aims to offer the learner the proper range of behavioral feedback to particular stimuli and to strengthen those responses via a successful reinforcement program (Burton et al., 2015). A successful reinforcement schedule needs reliable reiteration of small, continuous patterns of responsibilities; and progressive positive course of action. Devoid of positive support, cultured responses shall speedily be wiped out. It is due the fact that students will change their conduct till they obtain some affirmative reinforcement (Mason, 2013). Behaviorists clarify encouragement basing on schedules of affirmative and unconstructive strength.

By getting pellets of food each and every period it pecks at a knob pigeon gets a lesson and knowledge to peck the knob again for food. Pleasing encounters influence students to develop the preferred links flanked by definite stimuli and the suitable feedback (Raiola, 2014). For instance, a learner who get oral commend and quality grades for accurate answers and this is positive reinforcement is possible to learn the very answers successfully; the learner who gets little or response for similar response which is negative reinforcement will be less expected to learn them as efficiently (Krasnegor et al.,2013). Similarly, students have a tendency to keep away from feedbacks that are linked with punishment or repulsive implications like poor grades or poor comment.

The teaching methods of Behaviorist tend to depend on drill and skill practices to offer the steady reiteration essential for successful support of feedback patterns. Additional techniques are quiz and answer method in which quizes are of steadily mounting complexity; guided exercise; and usual comments of the tool. The techniques of behaviorist also classically depend greatly on the utilization of affirmative compliments like as good grades, verbal commend and prizes (Sidney, 2015). They assess the level of learning using models that determine evident behavior like performance in exam. Teaching of methods Behaviorist have established most triumphant in points where there is accurate feedback or else simply memorized material. Just for instance, even as behaviorist theories have established to be flourishing in instructing planned material like formulae and details, scientific ideas, and alien language terms, their efficiency in instructing composition, understanding and systematic capabilities is questionable.


Mental models

These are key ideas in each and every discipline where each idea is a model on how world really works which can be utilized to comprehend and solve issues and also predict probable results (Burton et al., 2015). As a student it is bests to learn many mental models to a point one understands them fully. Other needs one to deeply comprehend them that one can start a connection between them.

Mental models involve learning big ideas in main disciplines to an extent that they are in a mental latticework within the head of the student will then utilize them for the rest of life. These models allow us to come up with better decisions as students and scramble out of bad situations (Gentner & Stevens, 2014). Mental model with other people facilitates physical and cognitive interactions with artifacts, environment and even other people. Individual mental models are shaped by individual’s attributes, expertise in diverse domains and their beliefs. Predictive functions assist in solving issues in the situation of novels. The approach is not always logical. This is because mental models contain beliefs, mental images propositions and abstractions. If the mental model used is correct, its predictive power should be great and people can examine the plausibility of probable solutions.

Seeking for solutions in learning languages and reasoning needs learners to link various mental models developed. The control functions offer area to develop decisions and also control and monitor behavior. Mental models are just that individuals have in their minds and what normal direct their use of things. When instructors are introducing new concepts in class which students are working hard to grasp, they have to run and retrieve mental models which have concepts, ideas, past lesson strategies (Martignoni et al., 2016).


The best and successful experiences of the teacher which can be retrieved mean that mental models can be managed to adapt the phenomena of environment and also ensure successful search of new knowledge to the mental models that exist. By running mental models, those learners who normally perform poor can be controlled because as opposed to some other cognitive structures they have capability to deal with language understanding situations. The diagnostic functions of the mental models ensure that the learner develops meta-cognitive awareness and some guidance has to be needed for the learner to go via perturbation.

In addition, mental models assist in memory and thought. They are permanent and transient due to their existence of long term memory and working memory. Many mental models can be run together and bring a better understanding. The ways which an individual’s connects the related areas of mental models rely on the network of similar understanding. However, the way learners retrieves the needed mental model will rely on the efficiency of the process of storage and also the appropriateness of the perceived relationships. In addition, mental models can be affected by diverse factors such as the meta-ability of learner and also their efficient working memory (Martignoni et al., 2016). The consequences of mental models have been found to lie within the students. If he learner is not in position to link his or her models well in class, it it means the no concept will be exercised.



Learning is a process which involves lots of approaches. The use of theories to develop learning process is crucial step in making sure that students and other learners acquire knowledge. The teaching methods of Behaviorist tend to depend on skill and drill practices to offer the steady reiteration essential for successful support of feedback sequences. Mental models involve learning big ideas in main disciplines to an extent that they are in a mental latticework within the head of the student will then utilize them for the rest of life. However, social cognitive model is based on the fact that people learn by observing what other people are doing. Individuals can observe a behavior presided by others, and repeat those actions. It is frequently exhibited via framing of behaviors. These models allow us to come up with better decisions as students and scramble out of bad situations.



Burton, L., Westen, D., & Kowalski, R. (2015). Psychology (4th Australian and New Zealand ed.)

Cheng, P. Y., & Chu, M. C. (2014). Behavioral factors affecting students’ intentions to enroll in business ethics courses: A comparison of the theory of planned behavior and social cognitive theory using self-identity as a moderator. Journal of business ethics, 124(1), 35-46.

Conklin, A. M., Dahling, J. J., & Garcia, P. A. (2013). Linking affective commitment, career self-efficacy, and outcome expectations: A test of social cognitive career theory. Journal of Career Development, 40(1), 68-83.

Herrington, J., Reeves, T. C., & Oliver, R. (2014). Authentic learning environments. In Handbook of research on educational communications and technology (pp. 401-412). Springer New York.

Kim, M. S. (2014). Doing social constructivist research means making empathic and aesthetic connections with participants. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, 22(4), 538-553.

Lent, R. W., & Brown, S. D. (2013). Social cognitive model of career self-management: Toward a unifying view of adaptive career behavior across the life span. Journal of counseling psychology, 60(4), 557.

Gentner, D., & Stevens, A. L. (2014). Mental models. Psychology Press.

Martignoni, D., Menon, A., & Siggelkow, N. (2016). Consequences of misspecified mental models: Contrasting effects and the role of cognitive fit. Strategic Management Journal.

Mason, S. A. (2013). Behaviorist Theory. In Encyclopedia of Autism Spectrum Disorders (pp. 449-451). Springer New York.

Sidney, P. F. (2015). Evaluating a Behaviorist and Constructivist Learning Theory for 21st Century Learners.

Krasnegor, N. A., Rumbaugh, D. M., Schiefelbusch, R. L., & Studdert-Kennedy, M. (2013). Biological and behavioral determinants of language development. Psychology Press.

Raiola, G. (2014). Motor control and learning skills according to cognitive and ecological dynamic approach in a vision on behaviorism, cognitive, Gestalt and phenomenology theories. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 5(15), 504.

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