Cognitive Learning Theory

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Cognitive Learning Theory
Angela Baker
PSY 331
Mr. Domingo Mamaril
June 21, 2010

Cognitive Learning Theory Cognitive theorists try to explain human behavior by understanding how we process and store new information. The cognitive theories of learning originated from the gestalt theory. The three major contributors to the cognitive learning theories were Jean Piaget, Edward Tolman, and Albert Bandura. In this paper, I will evaluate the work of all three theorists, demonstrate an understanding of the theory, and explain how the theory can be applied to our current educational environment. The gestalt theory was founded by three men, Max Wertheimer, Wolfgang Kohlu, and Kurt Koffka. Wertheimer conducted several experiments, using a
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Tolman agrees mostly with the Gestalists about education. Tolman would test hypotheses in the learning environment. He would want the learner to be exposed to different viewpoints and encourage small group discussions. Tolman believed that learning occurs non-stop.
Tolman and Bandura share a lot of the same believes. They agree that learning is a continuous process that does not require reinforcement. Albert Bandura’s learning theory is known as observational learning theory. Bandura believed in reciprocal determinism, in that the environment and the behavior of a person cause each other. He believed that we learn from observing the consequences of our behavior. Bandura is famous for his study known as the “bobo doll” studies (Boeree, 2010). The study involved a group of children viewing a film of a woman beating a blow up clown. The children were allowed to play with a blown up clown and most mimicked the woman’s behavior. He preformed this study in many different ways, even using a real clown in one. This lead Bandura to believe, that there were steps involved in the modeling process (Boeree, 2010). He believed that for us to learn we must pay attention. If we lose our attention we will have a decrease in learning. We then must be able to recall what we were paying attention to. Bandura believes that we store what we have seen as mental images or verbally. Next we have to be able to reproduce what
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