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Observational Learning

Observational Learning

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Observational Learning

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  1. Observational Learning

  2. Observational Learning • Observational learning occurs when someone uses observation of another person's actions and their consequences to guide their future actions • A.K.A. = Modeling.

  3. Bandura’sBobo Doll Studies • Will children model violent behaviour? • Does TV violence effect children? • Does it matter who they observe? • Are boys more violent than girls? • Will children display aggression if the model was rewarded?

  4. Bandura’s Bobo Doll Studies (1961)

  5. Bandura’sBobo Doll Study -1 (1961) Control condition – 24 children each with no model in the room

  6. Bandura’s Bobo Doll Studies (1963a)

  7. Bandura’s Bobo Doll Studies (1963b)

  8. The ‘Bobo’ doll

  9. Vicarious Reinforcement/Punishment • Vicarious reinforcement – viewing a model being reinforced can strengthen behaviour in an observer • Vicarious punishment – viewing a model being punished can weaken a behaviour in an observer

  10. Elements of Observational Learning The learner plays an activerole in the learning process.

  11. Elements of Observational Learning • The learner plays an activerole in the learning process. They must: Pay attentionin order to observe the modeled behaviour • Attention may be influenced by numerous factors • The motivation and interest level of the observer • Personality characteristics of the model • Attractiveness of the model Mentally retain what has been observed • Responses learned by modeling are often not needed until some time after they have been acquired • Therefore, memory plays an active role in observational learning.

  12. Elements of Observational Learning Be capable of Reproducing the behaviour • Our ability to reproduce the modelled response may be restricted by physical ' limitations • Paraplegics cannot learn to walk by observing others Be motivated or have some reinforcement available • Unless the behavioural response provides a reward for you, it is unlikely that you will want to learn it

  13. Insight learning • The ‘ah ha!’ Experience = A form of learning involving a period of mental manipulation of information associated with a problem, prior to the sudden realisation of a solution.

  14. Insight learning – Sultan the chimp • Food placed out of reach • Two sticks within reach • Each too short to reach • Placed together the sticks can be used to get the food

  15. Insight learning – Stages of Insight • Preparation - When the organism gathers as much info as possible about what needs to be done. EG) sultan tries to reach with his arms, tries to reach with one stick, all attempts fail • Incubation – Mental ‘time out’. Information is reflected on but not focused on. EG) sits at the back of the cage and seems to have given up • Insightful experience -Also known as the ‘ah-ha’ experience. Some sort of mental event bridges the gap between the problem and the solution. EG) Realises he is holding both sticks and can join them together • Verification - When the visual image that ‘flashed’ into the mind and is put into action and confirmed EG) Uses the double stick to reach the food.


  17. Insight Learning features: • Trial and Error important but….. • Mental manipulation of the elements of a problem also important • The first time the solution is performed, it is usually done with no errors • The solution is less likely to be forgotten • Cognitive processes also involved – this is different to traditional CC and OC which ignore cognition

  18. Latent Learning • Latent – hidden • Latent learning – the organism decides not to perform an action that has been learned • Learning can occur even without reinforcement

  19. Tolman’s rats in a maze • Rats run a maze with a food reward at the finish point • All rats run the maze once a day • Performance timed • 3 groups of rats • Always reinforced at the end of the maze • Never reinforced at the end of the maze • Not reinforced until the 11th day

  20. Tolman’sresults

  21. Tolman’s rats in a maze - results • Group 1 - got faster and faster • Group 2 - remained slow • Group 3 - showed no improvement until reinforcement was introduced on day 11 then were even faster than group 1 Conclusions • Learning can happen without reinforcement • Behaviour not displayed unless incentive to do so • Rats had developed a mental picture of the maze as they learned the general layout known as a cognitive map.