Learning by Observation • Learning occurs not only through conditioning but also from our observation of others. • “We are, in truth, more than half what we are by imitation” Lord Chesterfield
Observational Learning: Definition • Observe and imitate others • Modeling- Process of observing and imitating a specific behavior • We learn all kinds of social behaviors by observing and imitating others
Mirror Neurons • Mirror neurons provide a neural basis for observational learning • Example: when a baby imitates a face an adult is making, mirror neurons are firing
Bandura’s Experiment • Albert Bandura • Pioneer of research in observational learning • BoBo Doll Experiment • Reinforcement and punishment leads to imitating a behavior
Social Influence on Observational Learning • Columbine High School- “copycat threats” • Prosocial- models can have positive effects • Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. • Television: • More hours children spend watching violent TV or playing violet video games, more at risk for aggression and crime as teens and adults • Homicides doubled between 1957 and 1974, coinciding with the introduction of television
Aversive Conditioning • In aversive conditioning, client is exposed to an unpleasant stimulus while engaging in the targeted behavior • Goal- create an aversion to it. • In adults, aversive conditioning is often used to combat addictions such as smoking or alcoholism. • Examples-Nausea-producing drug while the client is smoking or drinking so that unpleasant associations are paired with the addictive behavior. • Also used to treat nail biting, sex addiction, and other strong habits or addictions.