Cognitive Learning Theory Essays

1499 Words Mar 30th, 2012 6 Pages
Cognitive Learning Theory

Psychology of Learning PSY 331

October 12, 2009

Abstract Cognitive learning theories emerged in the mid-1900s and were a dramatic departure from the behaviorist learning theories so popular at the time. The advent of the computer also contributed to the emergence of cognitive theories of learning because computers provided the first means to "metaphorically conceptualize human cognition" (Bates, 1999). Cognitive learning theories are based on the assumption that the student is an active learner, that the student actively processes information. These theories emphasize internal processing of information and material to which a student is exposed. Processing include receiving information, processing it
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Ausubel discussed the differences between rote learning, meaningful learning and the active nature of learning (NSW HSC Online, n.d.). Ausubel also emphasized prior learning and initiated a learning tool called the advanced organizer (Cooper, 2005). The advanced organizer has its foundation in Gestalt psychology, which "taught that information is learned by understanding how information fits together, how it interrelates, and how it is organized" (Bates, 1999). Ausubel discussed expository and comparative organizers (Bates, 1999). The expository advanced organizer focused on new material emphasizing general concepts; the comparative advanced organized emphasize material the student already knows (Bates, 1999). One of the major differences between Bruner and Ausubel was that Bruner emphasized inductive learning, using specific observations or examples to determine the general rule or concept, and Ausubel emphasized deductive reasoning, learning a general rule or principle and then applying that to examples (University of Natal, 2005). Both emphasized meaningful learning but said this could only be achieved through different approaches (University of Natal, 2005). For Bruner, that was discovery, and for Ausubel, it was meaningful reception, which means that something like a concept can only become meaningful if it is linked to something already known (University of Natal, 2005). Gagne may be most famous